Tiny lens turns your smartphone camera into a microscope
Lars Rehm | Published: Apr 2, 2014 at 22:36 UTC25
There is a large number of third party lens attachments for smartphones available. You can choose from fisheye, wide-angle, macro or tele lenses, or even attach an entire camera module. The Micro Phone Lens Kickstarter project is different though. It's a minuscule lens attachment made from a scratch-proof polymer that turns your smartphone or tablet into a microscope with a 150x magnification factor.
The lens is adhesive, you simply stick it on and pull it off after use. The system works best when using a microscope slide. You focus by gently pressing on the slide until the image on your device's screen is in focus.
The Micro Phone Lens works on both the front and rear camera of any device that has at least a 5MP image size. The lens also has a diameter of only 6mm. The current prototype offers a resolution of approximately 2 Microns which will be improved to 1.5-1.6 Microns for the final production version.
If you want to back the project you can pre-order a Micro Phone Lens for $29 on the project's Kickstarter page. At this price the lens is a lot cheaper than dedicated microscopes with a comparable magnification which makes it ideal for home or school use. A portable and affordable microscope would also allow for scientific research in remote areas where access to scientific instruments are limited or non-existent. The video below provides more information about the project and the operation of the lens.