The optical microscope, often referred to as the "light microscope", is a type of microscope which uses visible light and a system of lenses to magnify images of small samples. Optical microscopes are the oldest and simplest of the microscopes. However, new designs of digital microscopes are now available which use a CCD camera to examine a sample and the image is shown directly on a computer screen without the need for expensive optics such as eye-pieces. Other microscopic methods which do not use visible light include scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy.
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