Taking measurement and calibration is essential for photos taken from a microscope. Knowing the size of object under your observation is very important for identification. This post, I would like to look at MICAM’s measuring and calibration function. MICAM is a free microscope image capturing and measuring software written by Marien van Westen, a lecturer at the Hanze University of Groningen (Netherlands). You can download it from Science4all. The source codes for the earlier releases can also be downloaded from the website. I like it a lot from my first try.
First, install the DirectShow driver from Tucsen application CD. Run the TCAM3-DXPlug-in.exe from Vista (or XP) folder.
First you want to download the software from Science4all website and install it. The installation is a snap just like any other windows application. Once you install MICAM, you will need to add microscopes then add objective lens to each microscope if you have multiple microscopes. You will be prompted to add microscope when you first run MICAM. If you did not set up the microscope on your first run, go to the preference menu from the main window. Once you add a microscope, add the objective lens one by one. In the example, I entered my Nexcope 701 microscope then 4x, 10x and 40x objective lens – I have one more to add (100x).
To calibration the camera, you will need a calibration slide to calibrate each objective separately. Please the calibration slide on the center of the stage as you would observer a specimen. If you are in the preview window, swith to measurement window by clicking on To Measurement (F3) button.
While in the measurement window, select the objective lens and check calibration checkbox. Draw a calibration line across the ruler by click on start point then drag across the ruler then release at the end point. Enter the length for this calibration lens. For example, my calibration slide is 0.01mm per division so 100 division will be 1mm (or 1000 um). MICAM will automatically calculate how many pixels alone the calibration line and calibration coefficient (um/pixel). Do the same for each objective lens.
To take the measurement of your specimen, click on the To Measurement (F3) button while you are on the preview window like you do with calibration. CHECK OFF the calibration check box. Select the starting point then end point as you would do for the calibration. While you release the mouse button, the measurement will appear on the screen.
MICAM’s calibration and measurement is very similiar to TSView. If you are familiar with TSView, you should not have any problem working with MICAM.