Dies Natalis lecture ‘Microscopy: Discovering invention, inventing discovery’

News - 19 January 2023 - Communication ImPhys

Following in the footsteps of Antoni Van Leeuwenhoek and his groundbreaking microscope, Bernd Rieger and Sjoerd Stallinga unlocked the current world of microscopy, and showed us which innovations led us there, at the 181st birthday of TU Delft.

Thanks to Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, TU Delft is known as the birthplace of microscopy. The modern-day successors of Van Leeuwenhoek have penetrated the barriers of the cell in their search for the biochemical basis of life itself. Using modern optical microscopes, they see molecular interactions far smaller than the wavelength of visible light. The technique was first used in 2006. According to classic physics, this is impossible, but the technique of single molecule localisation microscopy actually transforms a microscope into a nano-scope. At TU Delft, Prof. Bernd Rieger and Prof. Sjoerd Stallinga (Faculty of Applied Sciences) work to make super-resolution microscopy even more precise. It’s no less than astonishing to see that, 350 years after Van Leeuwenhoek, our TU Delft researchers are still further improving the optical microscope. Both researchers gave a lecture during our universities’ 181st Dies Natalis, sharing the latest innovation insights into one of our most known TU Delft innovations: Microscopy.

(Lecture Stallinga & Rieger 09:00-36:00)