Scientists often need to examine things that are too small to be seen by the human eye, like bacteria or the tiny cells that make up living things. Since the 16th century, scientists have been able to see these tiny things with the help of a microscope. The most common type of microscope is the light microscope, which uses light and multiple lenses to magnify an object up to 1,000 times its actual size.

Image credits: main image, courtesy of AMNH.