Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Cant we see atoms?

  1. Aug 23, 2010 #1
    Cant we see atoms??

    In a book I read that theoretically it is not possible to see atoms even if high quality microscopes are used. So why is that?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 23, 2010 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Re: Cant we see atoms??

    It is impossible to see them visually because they are smaller than the wavelengths of visible light. You can indirectly see them with various special microscopes that use operating principles other than visible light
  4. Aug 23, 2010 #3
    Re: Cant we see atoms??

    So we can use x ray microscopes etc right?
  5. Aug 23, 2010 #4


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook