Pollen grains: tactoids and spiky spheres

Hi Foldscope Expolorers! This is my first foldscope adventure. Last year, Manu shared the joy of foldscopy with a bunch of us at the University of Chicago. Yesterday, I finally built my own foldscope and I’m excited to try it out! Next week, I will share foldscopy with some Chicago Public School teachers. Hopefully, their…

Magnesium Sulphate – Polarizing movie

For a few pennies, I was able to get some Epsom salts. I added water and let it dry on the slide and then viewed with polarizing filters. Magnesium sulfate is used medically for certain cardiac rhythm problems (Torsades des points), severe asthma, and in certain cases to protect baby when mother enters labor early….

Magnesium Sulphate (Epsom Salt) crystals.

Magnesium sulfate is used medically for certain cardiac rhythm problems (Torsades des points), severe asthma, and in certain cases to protect baby when mother enters labor early. It is also called Epsom salts and used for soaking and skin healing.

Serendipitous Dance of Polarizing Crystals – MgSO4

For a few pennies, I was able to get some Magnesium sulphate. I mixed in water and allowed it to dry on the slide. I thought it had dried, but when I looked at the clip I realized there was a drop of water (at about 7 seconds into the clip) at the top of…

Incense stick powder

INCENSE STICK POWDER COLLEGE NAME:CMR NATIONAL PU COLLEGE  STUDENT NAME:Y RAMAA SARANYA  ITEM OBSERVED :INCENSE STICK POWDER DESCRIPTION:I observed the incense stick powder through the foldscope at my  college.As observed,these particles looked small and clustered.It was such a wonderful experience to see how the particles of the incense stick powder looked thorough the foldscope.  


A section from orchidectomy specimen shows tumour cells surrounded by fibrovascular septa along with admixed lymphocytic infiltrate as seen under Foldscope from Department of Pathology of R D Gardi Medical College, Ujjain

Contrast in pollen grain and lead particles through foldscope

Name: Reya Gafar College Name: CMR National PU College ITPL, Bangalore Description: We had the opportunity to observe and differentiate various nano particles of everyday life that we brought as samples to our college. A great variety of shapes and sizes were observed through the foldscopes that day . This particular picture is of pollen…

Puerto Maldonado (Peru) visit: Day 1 & 2

+ Día 1 || Day 1 (english below) + • Vine a Perú a renovar mi visa y mi corto viaje se convirtió en mucho más de lo que pude imaginar • • Hoy fue mi primer día en Puerto Maldonado y junto al equipo del Foldscope y ACEER Foundation – financiados por National Geographic…


The Director, Directorate of School Education, Puducherry directed the teachers of various government schools to initiate proposals to participate in this Foldscope Science Research Project, out of which our school Artchouna Soupraya Naikar, Government. Middle School, Mudaliarpet, Puducherry got shortlisted, and Mr.D.Aravindaraja, Teacher – Principal Investigator of the same school was nominated to attend the…

Monosodium glutamate crystals

Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is responsible for the umami or “savoury” taste of many of our foods. I was able to buy a tiny amount at a bulk food store for only a few pennies….can’t recall the last time I bought something so interesting for only a few pennies!

Raw Honey – polarizing light clip

Raw Honey often contains pollen and tiny bits of beeswax. I think the structure at about 4 o’clock maybe wax, but am not sure if I can say so confidently. As you watch the clip under polarized light, you can see the sugar (primarily glucose and fructose) crystals shimmering. Ambient room temperature is quite high…

Methotrexate – short movie clip with polarizers

Here is a short clip of the Methotrexate crystals under polarizing filters.  Methotrexate was one of the first chemotherapeutic agents (and still used), and was discovered by Yellapragada Subbarao, who also had major contributions in elucidating the role of ATP and earliest antibiotics.

More Potash

Here is a short polarized film of potash which contains a number of potassium compounds. You can see the birefringent potassium nitrate crystals.


Here is Potash with polarized light and you can see the birefringent KNO3.

Egg White

Chicken egg is the best source of protein, lipids, vitamins, and minerals. Eggs consist of 3 main components: eggshell, egg white, and yolk. Albumen commonly known as egg white is rich in proteins. Albumen color is opalescent and doesn’t appear white until an egg is whipped or cooked. Egg whites are a low-calorie food containing…

I Sakshi Sangwikar along with my fellow student Gayatri Tulapulkar at CMR National PU College at ITPL, Bangalore observed salt under a foldscope on 8th June, 2018. Salt is a white transparent crystalline compound.  It is found in the rocks of mines. It is seldom used in our everyday life. Salt gives taste to our food. It…

Fibers from Nature -2 (Spider silk)

In the corner of my house, I spotted a web. Fixed it on a slide using a cellotape and viewed it through the Foldscope. I was astonished as it revealed the facts about it as a fiber material. The spotted spider web  A spiderweb commonly found in all house hold as a dreaded thing can…

Sticky pollen

I had always imagined pollen to have thick, spiny covering called exine, which had germ pores on it. I came across Morning glory plant with pink flowers. It had bell shaped flowers, with the stamens quite deep seated. I took out the anthers, which had some staminal hairs along the filaments.  I could see a…

Table sugar with polarizers

For this, I mixed regular table sugar with tap water and let it air dry.  Then observed this at the edge.

Fibers from Nature -1

I, Aman Arjel  of SD College, Chandigarh could never imagine, sample collection for foldscoping could lead me to a summer vacation project on fibers of biological origin. It all happened by chance. Thanks to my buddy Kanwar Pal Singh who noticed Calotropis fruit – a follicle (which our Botany teacher told) and chose to see…