Immersion oils are pellucid oils that have specific optical and viscosity characteristics compatible for usage in microscopy. Immersion oils have a refractive index closer to that of glass, and they do not refract the beams of light being focused on the item being examined. Consequently, all light beams are focused onto the object to be examined, as opposed to light beams going through air and being scattered, thus hampering the quality of the analysis. Using immersion oils results in higher brightness at high magnification and high image resolution. The global immersion oil market is expected to expand at a significant rate driven by increase in demand for innovation in the field of science. The immersion oil market was valued at about US$ 55 Mn in 2016 and is projected to expand at a CAGR of more than 5% during the forecast period.

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Factors such as improvements in sample labelling, contrast, illumination, resolution, signal detection, and data processing have occurred at all stages of microscopy experiments, which are driving the demand for immersion oil. The discovery of blood cells in the human body opened the doors for advanced studies in cell biology.


Discovery of genes involved in human development through microscopes is a clear demonstration of the importance of microscopes in life sciences. Rise in demand for microscopes is expected to boost the demand for immersion oil. Increase in innovation of microscopes has had a significant impact on the global immersion oil market. However, less number of research studies on immersion oil and no new innovation in magnification techniques are also restraining the immersion oil market.

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Major players operating in the immersion oil market have adopted mergers and acquisitions as their key strategy to expand their network and boost their investments. For instance, in 2016, Honeywell International Inc. acquired Xtralis, a leading company that operates in the field of early fire and intrusion detection technologies. The acquisition fits perfectly with Honeywell’s technology innovation and leadership and helped expand its product portfolio.

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Launching new products and facilities is likely to be the long-term strategy of immersion oil manufacturers. For example, Cargille Laboratories, Inc. launched a whole new series of Cargille Meltmount for microscopy and optical coupling. These are specially formulated for optical-quality thermoplastics for usage in microscope slide mounting and in other optical coupling applications. The company developed its new line of Sub-Lux Gels, which are profoundly black gels and are designed to eliminate back reflection when paired with glasses of similar refractive index.

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