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Dec 29, 2015 10:02 EST

µPeek – The Professional Microscope that Fits in Your Wallet: A credit card sized microscope that connects wirelessly to your smartphone – Discover the microcosm in all its facets wherever you are.

iCrowdNewswire - Dec 29, 2015

Microscopy is one of most fundamental disciplines for exploring the incredible diversity of life from its very bottom. µPeek invites you to start discovering the fascinating microcosm in a uniquely simple, yet powerful way.

What is µPeek?

µPeek is a sleek gadget that lets users perform microscopy with their smartphones in an equally abundant and artistic way as they do photography. µPeek is the first smartphone microscope that combines the functionality of a full-fledged microscope with pleasing aesthetics, true everyday portability and user-friendly operation via an Android/iOS App.

The Swiss-Army Knife of Microscopes

Despite its sleek form factor µPeek is full of technology. A motorized 4-element lens creates undistorted high-quality images and sophisticated illumination optics put your specimen in the right light. Everything wirelessly controlled by the supplied App.

For example, while focusing with competing products generally involves painful manual adjustments, µPeek lets the in-built motor do the job. Meanwhile, keep your device calm and take razor-sharp images that suffice both your scientific AND artistic curiosity.

µPeek supports work with standardized microscope slides by providing a precision slide holder with every µPeek delivered. The holder fixes the slide in position and contains surface regions that improve the uniformity of specimen illumination in the different microscopy modes. With your µPeek you will receive a set of empty slides and a guide to easy specimen preparation.

A Companion that Doesn’t Fall Apart

Because portability is one of µPeek’s main deliverables, the slide holder has been designed to seamlessly merge with µPeek into a single device. Simply stick the slide holder to the sticky tape and hold both pieces in place. Conventiently, this also protects the sticky tape from collecting dirt.

µPeek Personalized

Don’t like golden yellow? No problem! Choose from another four colors and give µPeek your personal touch
Don’t like golden yellow? No problem! Choose from another four colors and give µPeek your personal touch

Stretch Goals

How Does it Work?

µPeek works in a simple and convenient way with almost any specimen that catches your attention. To get started it is suggested that you place µPeek straight onto your subject of interest. This way you create a stable platform and directly move into a good focus position. When working with a slide, you best place it into the slide holder first. µPeek can then be moved along the specimen without touching it.

Utilizing µPeek with a prepared microscope slide and neatly put it away after use.
Utilizing µPeek with a prepared microscope slide and neatly put it away after use.

Rewards

International Shipping – EU-Friendly Fulfillment

We understand that high shipping costs can be a major concern on kickstarter. Especially EU citizens are often surprised by the duty to pay large sums for VAT and administrative charges at delivery of their much anticipated product; because it was not included in their pledge. The duty to pay VAT cannot be omitted. However, by importing products in a bulk shipment to the EU, we can save you excessive administrative charges as all VAT and customs are paid by us. Within the EU the parcels can be individually forwarded at low cost and arrive at your doorstep without any surprises. Pledged sums of EU citizens include VAT in the highlighted shipping costs!

For any shipments to the US or other international locations we have done our best to minimize shipping costs. Unfortunately we cannot take care of customs in countries outside the EU (despite Switzerland) but luckily the tax burden outside the EU is generally much lower. In the US, for example, there is a 200$ tax-free threshold that µPeek can slip through.

Size Matters

Not much larger than a credit card and about half the thickness of an average smartphone, µPeek comfortably disappears into any pocket and snugly fits into your wallet. Available whenever you find an opportunity to explore and capture your environment, µPeek opens up an entirely new way of satisfying your curiosity. 

Attachment – Sleek and Simple

When designing µPeek, we deliberately decided against having a smartphone-specific attachment case. Instead, µPeek comes with a thin layer of carefully selected adhesive. The elastic sticky tape conforms to your smartphone and detaches again without leaving traces. This form of attachment is universally applicable, aesthetic and saves space. To check if your smartphone is compatible with µPeek and to select the right stickypad, please visit this page. The list on this page is not concluding, and chances are good that a smartphone not yet listed there is still compatible with µPeek. 

In order to provide best compatibility for today’s and future phones or yours, the sticky pads are exchangeable.

Attaching µPeek to your smartphone and removing it again. All done in less than ten seconds.
Attaching µPeek to your smartphone and removing it again. All done in less than ten seconds.
And what if the sticky pad loses grip? Rinse it under a stream of water, as µPeek is fully splash proof.
And what if the sticky pad loses grip? Rinse it under a stream of water, as µPeek is fully splash proof.

The µPeek App 

µPeek was not made to be an unintelligent auxiliary device. It has been created to empower you with full control via our proprietary Android/iOS Apps. µPeek features a low-energy Bluetooth module for quick connection to your smartphone. Once connected, you can use the App to control light and focus, and of course take and share pictures and videos as you go.

Focusing different regions on the embossed letter of a credit card.
Focusing different regions on the embossed letter of a credit card.

Multiple Microscopy Modes – Single Device

µPeek’s innovative (patent-pending) illumination design allows performing several distinctive modes of microscopy. Besides standard bright-field microscopy, µPeek handles dark-field and fluorescence (only µPeek Blue) microscopy, as well as polarized illumination. These advanced techniques are used by experts to highlight different visual aspects, and in fact create beautiful variations of one and the same specimen. µPeek democratizes access to these techniques and lets users experience nature in all its facets.

By selectively dimming µPeek’s light sources, you can individually tune any of the different microscopy modes separately with our App. Personalize the outcome of your observations by combining the information of all available microscopy modes into your favorite visual setting.

Plant leaf as seen with different illuminations
Plant leaf as seen with different illuminations

µPeek Blue – A True Expert Package

Equipped with UV lights and a UV cut-off filter µPeek Blue masters fluorescence microscopy. µPeek Blue integrates almost all professionally relevant microscopy modes. As an all-round tool µPeek Blue enhances laboratory environments or can be used for quality control in industry. To non-professional users µPeek Blue provides the ultimate exploratory experience. For example, investigate the fluorescent materials on bank notes, or those naturally found in plants or minerals.

Fluorescent micro beads in a liquid manipulated by a magnet.
Fluorescent micro beads in a liquid manipulated by a magnet.

Heads Up with Upscale Microscopes

When combined with a smartphone µPeek offers magnification of approximately 30x – 300x, depending on the smartphone used and the chosen zoom factor. Courtesy of its high-quality optics images remain undistorted and sharp across the whole range of magnification. In terms of image quality µPeek closely aligns with the performance of professional microscopes but – at comparable resolution power – it can offer larger viewable areas (i.e. field-of view).

Low Cost – Democratization of Microscopy

µPeek is the first platform that opens up the full diversity of microscopy at an affordable price tag. Compared to conventional microscopes with a similar breath of functionality, µPeek equips a whole classroom at the cost of a single device.

If you like µPeek as much as we do you may be interested in hearing that you can buy about two dozen of them at the price of a functionally similar lab microscope ;-)
If you like µPeek as much as we do you may be interested in hearing that you can buy about two dozen of them at the price of a functionally similar lab microscope 😉

Community

At Scrona, the micro- and nanoworld fascinate us! And we want to share our enthusiasm with the world. Our vision is for µPeek to enable education at schools and for individuals. We plan to build a community where people share their pictures and exchange their findings on optimal illumination settings. We would be delighted if this could encourage remote diagnostics or simply introduce people to the full beauty of life.

Timeline

Why we created µPeek – A Story of Opportunity

Scrona was initially founded to commercialize a novel 3D inkjet printing technology, which is the highest-resolution inkjet-based technology that exists to date. To showcase the printed nanoscale features, we needed a portable, yet powerful microscope. This simply didn’t exist at the time… and triggered the conception of µPeek.

To our great satisfaction, we found that early prototypes of µPeek not only solved our problems, but also generated overwhelming interest and fascination. We suddenly realized how cool our creation really was! The entrepreneurial mindset took its own course. We decided to improve this device and transform it into a stand-alone product.

Today, after months of additional development, we proudly release µPeek to the Kickstarter community. We believe that Kickstarter is ‘the‘ place where ideas and innovation are valued above all. Therefore, we not only want to sell a great product to you; but involve you further. By pledging to our campaign, you will also support the further development of our 3D printing technology, helping us bring it from an early stage to a funding-ready technology platform, which can eventually hit the market, creating a strong impact. Scrona is currently also participating in a call for a European Project, with more than ten industrial partners throughout Europe and the US. For more information about our revolutionary printing technology – for example on how it could be used to manufacture flexible displays – visit www.scrona.com.

As Seen In

A Truly Unique Perk: Complement Your µPeek with Your Personal Microscopic Image

You are looking for a really unique and beautiful perk to further expand the usefulness of your µPeek? Fresh from the lab and only here on Kickstarter you can now send your personal image into the realm of the microcosm.

Using a novel 3D nanoprinting technology we will create what even upscale computer chip fabrication processes wouldn’t realize. Your image will be condensed to the size of a single grain of salt, made of pure gold or fluorescent nanoparticles. Only visible as a blinking dot to the naked eye, you can use your µPeek to fully reveal the images and seriously impress your friends.

Micro Image Text: This perk features a text of up to 30 letters, made of gold. You can choose to have two text pieces printed on top of each other (e.g. the name of you and your spouse) and use the µPeek light polarization option to either show one or the other text piece (works by virtue of the internal nanostructure of the image).

Micro Image Gold: This perk features a brilliant image of your personal choice printed in pure gold. 256 brightness levels are achieved by printing fine gold lines and varying their average thickness with sub-nanometer accuracy. Absolutely unique!

Micro Image Colour: This is the real deal and very difficult to fabricate. Quite simply, no other manufacturing technology could do it! Three layers of red, green and blue fluorescent nanoparticles are aligned with highest precision to create a true-to-life color micro image.

Microscopic images
Microscopic images

Team

Having first met during their PhD studies at ETH Zurich, Julian and Patrick created amazing technology already before conceiving µPeek. Their fascination for disrupting complex technology, particularly in micro- and nanotechnology, brought them together with ETH computer science graduate Martin Schmid with whom they founded Scrona. Besides counting on engineering knowledge from one of the world’s top10 engineering schools, Scrona’s founders are lucky to count on the experience of their close business advisors and board members, including Swiss entrepreneur of the Year Martin Ziehbrunner and serial entrepreneur Anil Sethi.

Contact Information:

Scrona

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