Nikon has held the Small World photomicrography contest each year since 1975 to find the most amazing images that can’t be seen with the naked eye.
A second category was added in 2011, and the Small World In Motion contest brings these microcosms to life through video and time lapse photography. The 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners are awarded money for great Nikon equipment that the photographers can use to explore and expand our understanding and appreciation of the microscopic world.
All entries are judged on their originality, informational content, technical proficiency, and visual impact. This year's submissions were judged by Dr. Paul Maddox from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Take a look at the stunning winners as well as some incredible honorable mentions:
First Place: The development of the zebrafish lateral line, the organ that senses water movements in the fish.
Credit: Dr. Mariana Muzzopappa and Jim Swoger of the Institute for Research in Biomedicine Barcelona in Spain.
Second Place: Time-lapse of caffeine crystallization
Credit: Dr. Douglas Clark of the Paedia Corporation in San Francisco, California.
Third Place: Oil film floating on water (12.5x)
Credit: Dr. John Hart from the University of Colorado Boulder
Honorable Mention: Developing mouse embryonic kidneys (4x)
Credit: Dr. Nils Lindström from The Roslin Institute in Edinburgh
Honorable Mention: Killer T cell engaging a cancer cell (1000x)
Credit: Alex Ritter, Dr. Bi-Chang Chen,Dr. Wesley Legant & Dr. Liang Gao from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland
Honorable Mention: Human melanoma (cancer) cells blebbing (100x)
Credit: Dr. Jeremy Logue from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland
Honorable Mention: Tracking the locomotion of a fruit fly (10x)
Credit: Pushkar Paranjpe from Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Honorable Mention: C. elegans (nematode) cell division (63x)
Credit: Shaohe Wang from the University of California, San Diego
Honorable Mention: Rotifer (microscopic water creature) (750x)
Credit: Ralph Claus Grimm from Jimboomba, Queensland, Australia