New portable microscope is small but perfectly formed

Cambridge Industrial Design customer ioLight has invented an exciting new portable microscope. With a resolution of better than 1μm, it produces beautiful pictures of animal and plant cells and displays them directly onto your mobile device.


Cambridge Industrial Design has been working with start-up ioLight to develop the portable microscope.

Traditionally, lab microscopes have been large and expensive. The ioLight microscope is easily portable - it fits in a rucksack or jacket pocket - and captures beautiful images of plant and animal cells. Images are displayed instantly on your tablet or smart phone making them simple to share or paste into your homework or Nobel Prize winning paper.

Resolution is better than 1 micron (1 thousandth of a mm) and gives x200 magnification on a 10" tablet screen and even more on a larger screen. The cost is a fraction of the conventional lab microscopes. The design accommodates an X-Y stage in a thin, pocket friendly base while also integrating a reliable, folding Z stage.

From school children to large animal vets the ioLight has the potential to make high definition images of the microscopic world dramatically easier to obtain and share.

ioLight is currently raising funding to put the microscope into manufacturing next year. You can find out more at

Cambridge Industrial Design


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