What you are seeing above is a microscope that is priced far below anything on the market today. The goal in creating Foldscope, an origami paper microscope, is to provide scientific tools to as many people as possible. After a successful Kickstarter campaign late last year, the microscope will now be available as a general pre-order starting tomorrow.
As mentioned previously, the Foldscope started life nearly two years ago but was made available as a campaign on Kickstarter in November 2016. The microscope is made from paper (with exception of the lens) and needs to be constructed. It is extremely durable and doesn't require a power source of any kind as it is illuminated by natural light. So how well does a paper microscope that costs a dollar to produce perform?
According to the folks at Foldscope:
"We have tested many lenses. In the next phase, Foldscope will utilize a 2.38 mm borosilicate glass lens, which provides 140x magnification and 2 micron resolution. This is sufficient to distinguish red blood cells and even watch live bacteria."
Although Foldscope has not announced pricing on the pre-order units, it is going to offer folks the option of buying in predetermined numbers (10, 20, etc). Much like the Kickstarter units, the microscopes that are pre-ordered tomorrow will be shipping out in August 2017.
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