Imaging winners at the Eureka Prizes

DIY Droplet Lens, Winner, ANSTO Eureka Prize for Innovative Use of Technology, © Australian Museum

We’d like to congratulate our friends and colleagues Tri Phan from the Garvan Institute and Steve Lee from the Australian National University for their droplet lens that won them the ANSTO Eureka Prize for Innovative Use of Technology.

The lens, made by suspending a drop of liquid polymer so it forms a perfect optical shape, can be used to turn a smartphone into a microscope for less than $2.

With magnification up to 160×—enough resolution to view structures smaller than human blood cells—their device performs better than $1000 devices in clinical use.

The 2014 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes, known as “the Oscars of Australian science”, put the spotlight on winners and finalists in research & innovation, leadership, science communication & journalism and school science.

Among the finalists was our own Professor Kat Gaus, who, along with Professor Justin Gooding and Dr Peter Reece, developed an optical device that can monitor the activity of a single living cell. This earned them a nomination for the UNSW Eureka Prize for Excellence in Interdisciplinary Scientific Research.

Date Published: 
Friday, 12 September 2014