Photographic Ode To An Electron Microscope

Camera: Apple iPhone XS
Exposure: 1/17
Aperture: f/1.8
Focal Length: 28mm equivalent
ISO: 40

It is time to say goodbye to a workhorse that has been a part of a tremendous amount of retinal science from Helga Kolb to serving as the machine that helped us to create the world’s first retinal connectomes.  I feel absolutely wistful about this Hitachi H-600 Transmission Electron Microscope, as it has been a workhorse we used to create the very first images on film that we digitized and Tolga Tasdizen and Pavel Koshevoy (@phoshevoy) from the Scientific Computing Institute helped us to craft code to mosaic and register images requires to assemble the connectomes.  I loved the soft, incandescent glow from the instrument panel with old-school, physical buttons and knobs to change magnification, vacuum, etc… in contrast to newer scopes that run everything through a computer interface.

This complex machine is making way for a new JEOL JEM-1400 Transmission Electron Microscope made possible by a generous gift from donors.  This new microscope will complement our existing and hard worked JEOL JEM-1400 that will help us to double the bandwidth of our connectomics efforts, and do more science.

 

Camera: Apple iPhone XS
Exposure: 1/60
Aperture: f/1.8
Focal Length: 26mm equivalent
ISO: 200

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/125
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/125
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/180
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/180
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/15
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/15
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/350
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/90
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/250
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/60
Aperture: f/1.4
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 800

 

Camera: Leica M9
Exposure: 1/60
Aperture: f/1.8
Focal Length: 35mm
ISO: 160

 

Camera: Apple iPhone XS
Exposure: 1/120
Aperture: f/1.8
Focal Length: 26mm equivalent
ISO: 500

2 Replies to “Photographic Ode To An Electron Microscope”

  1. Hi Bryan. Thanks so much for your pics of this beautiful old machine! I’m trying to write a small history of our own Imaging Facility and I can’t find any pics or info at all from Hitachi about these older TEMs. I think ours was an H-600, at least I definitely remember the three round ports and the lovely green phosphorescent glow of the screen. Do you know what year yours was purchased? Our department would have acquired ours around 1985 or so. It was sold off in the early 2000s so I’m just relying on my memories from grad school in the 80s to guide me. Anyway, I’m going with the H-600 unless I can come up with a better guess. Sad that most of the guys who would know have passed on.

    1. Hey Dianne,

      Yeah, I don’t have a precise date for when that Hitachi was acquired, but it probably was right around 1984-85 time frame. Helga Kolb was the one who originally acquired that system. She may know if you’d like to reach out to her. email me and I’ll connect you if you’d like to talk with her directly.

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