Diatom Shop

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"Not everyone knows that Phytoplankton (also known as microalgae,  such as Diatoms and Coccolithophores) contribute between 50 to 85 percent of the oxygen in Earth’s atmosphere, play a part in the regulation of atmospheric carbon dioxide and form an essential component of the marine food chain. Plankton in general have often artistic shapes that lead us to reflect upon spiritual matters and wonders of Nature. In particular Diatoms and Radiolarians emanate hypnotic beauty, magic, mathematics, mystery, fun and solemnity at the same time: owning Diatom Shop's professional microscope slides that contain Diatoms or Radiolarians is like owning a piece of all these features, a piece of the art of who carefully prepared these handmade products, a piece of antique and modern, a piece of the small and big powerful Microcosm. Diatom Lab di Stefano Barone is like a 19th century firm that operates in the  21st century. Diatom Shop makes microscopy more exciting, fascinating and unforgettable" (Stefano Barone)

Welcome to Diatom Shop!

Stefano Barone is a professional microscope slide preparer and uses different techniques, such as Micro-manipulation, thanks to which several microscopic elements (e.g. Diatoms and Radiolarians) can be arranged on a permanent microscope slide.
Diatom Lab di Stefano Barone is a registered company and Diatom Shop is the store that sells its microscope slides: it, inter alia, means that the products offered are professionally prepared and customers have a great choice of quality products and samples, moreover a lot of money, research and technology are (and have been) invested to realize and keep alive this big dream. Diatom Shop uses only undamaged (intact) and well cleaned Diatoms and Radiolarians, which are Micro-manipulated paying attention to their perfect positioning. All the recent and fossil Diatoms and Radiolarians are cleaned the internal laboratory (using long, professional and dangerous techniques that require individual protection devices and protective clothing).

Diatom Shop uses only microfiltered mountants, moreover all microscope slides with micromanipulated microscopic objects have customized coverglasses manufactured in Germany with high optical quality: Diatom Shop (Diatom Lab) serves universities, colleges, research centres and microscope companies from all the world, in addition to private customers of course!

Please notice the extreme cleanliness and contrast of Diatom Shop's microscope slides by watching the short clip below! Diatom Shop's self-produced mountants and fixatives are really invisible even in Phase Contrast and Differential Interference Contrast (DIC)!
Moreover the special mounting techniques used with the self-produced mountants (such as Diatom Cubed, Styraplus, Dammaplus) assure that diatoms and radiolarians will never change their original position during shipping or storage, as mountants properly harden during mounting procedures.

These unique handmade arranged microscope slides are a way of making the public aware not just of this form of art but of the inherent beauty of microscopic life (it wouldn’ be too much to call Radiolarians and Diatoms miniature jewels).

Diatom Shop is registered and based in Italy with the Italian VAT number IT 01635810193 (Partita IVA 01635810193), with the company name "Diatom Lab di Stefano Barone" and under the classification “Research and development in the field of other natural sciences and engineering”.

Stefano Barone's products come from epic accuracy / precision / patience, plus a lot of time, extreme passion and unusual personal predisposition. This is a totally handmade work, no machines work in place of him! He started from the Victorian concept to formulate and refine his personal formula recipes and techniques, after years of research and practice. These techniques ensure accuracy, cleanliness and potential infinite duration: even if they were disclosed, they would require a monk-like living to be properly learned and to become a true daily activity and profession.
Although Diatom Lab works with the latest research microscopes and although modern techniques, mountants and fixatives are generally better than those of the Victorian era, this company does not differ much from a Nineteenth-century laboratory, so your purchases will help to keep this Ancient Craft still alive today!

Diatom Shop sells its special products online (by email order) or more rarely through the business eBay page http://www.ebay.com/usr/diatomshop (the eBay account name is diatomshop ).  Read the 100% positive eBay Feedbacks at the following link:

The company works with honesty, accuracy and transparency: you'll always receive a paper invoice (if you are a business company) or a paper tax receipt (if you are a private customer) with every purchase. Shipping is worldwide: all parcels are fully tracked, so that you can check the progress of your items through to delivery. All these handmade products are safely sent using special microscope mailer cases, bubble wrap and cardboard boxes or padded envelopes. Payments are possible using PayPal or Bank transfer.

Diatom Shop uses several high refractive index mountants: for example the self-invented and self produced Diatom³ (Diatom Cubed), Styraplus and Dammaplus (all for internal use, not for sale: at the moment the long time required for selecting and arranging diatoms does not allow to produce mountants in larger quantities). In particular  Diatom³ (Diatom Cubed) is an excellent formula tested both with the measurement of the refractive index (greater than 1.7), and using several diatom species under different optical conditions (the high resolution tests have also been made using Zeiss research microscope Axio Imager.A2 equipped with a full frame camera). Diatom³ (Diatom Cubed) is very stable over time too. Diatom Shop self produces mountants that were in use in the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries too: Styrax + Aroclor, Styrax, Dammar gum and Tolu balsam. All mountants prepared in Diatom Shop's internal laboratory are excellent and have no impurities in bright field, phase contrast and differential interference contrast, even at high magnifications.

Enjoy the opportunity to buy freshly made microscope slides, in fact antique and vintage microscope slides may have some defects caused by poor storage.

You can also visit the blog about these unique slides at the following link: https://arrangedmicroscopeslides.wordpress.com/ This blog is a virtual showcase / diary where Stefano Barone displays the fine microscope slides he produces: the idea of raising awareness of this ancient Art by a modern communication tool (the blog) is proving to be very effective and new.

Stefano Barone is also a science educator and a photographer.

Feel free to contact Diatom Shop with questions, comments or commissions regarding these products.

Please open the short microscope videos below (reduced quality, you can watch the original clips in HD visiting Diatom Shop's YouTube channell at this link:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6RQnTtBkddOMDpy3WWDNjw )

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