The origin of the FOM conference series lies in the three-dimensional imaging capabilities of confocal microscopy, together with the associated 3D image processing. Since then the technology for optical microscopy has progressed with the development of opto-electronic technologies such as femtosecond lasers, nanometric precision scanners and stages, highly sensitive photo-detectors, emergence of new optical approaches and image processing and analysis techniques.

Equally important for the field was the development of sophisticated fluorescent reporters. Utilizing these, fluorescence life-time, FCS and other fluorescence analysis techniques have become essential tools, permitting the determination of the presence and activation of specific biological entities inside biological materials at sub-micron resolutions. Nonlinear optical microscopy like multi-photon excited fluorescence microscopy, second-harmonic and coherent anti-Stokes Raman facilitate imaging based on new contrasts like molecular composition.

The resolution capabilities in microscopy have been extended via near-field scanning optical microscopy, four-pi confocal microscopy, and coherence probe microscopy. The last years especially have seen the successful realization of sub-Abbe resolution optical imaging by a number approaches to such a degree that the term nanoscopy has rightfully been introduced.

These developments have been reported in FOM conferences, starting in 1988. The programs of the conferences of the last 30 years can be found on this website under the button "Past conferences". For the conferences from 2004 the various presentations are available together with one page PDF abstracts. A "Search" function is available.

The FOM conferences constitute an effective meeting point for developers and users working in this rapidly evolving field, playing an important role in the dissemination of information about new developments. The FOM conferences are accompanied by a technical exhibition showing the recent technical developments in microscopy and associated techniques.

Complete list of FOM conferences

1988 (March 9-11) Giessen, Germany
1989 (March 15-17) Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1990 (July 2-6) London (with Micro!)
1991 (April 9-12) Atlantic city (with Scanning '91)
1992 (March 9-11) Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1993 (February 8-11) Sydney, Australia
1994 (April 25-28) Munich, Germany
1995 (April 18-20) Taipei, Taiwan
1996 (April 15-17) Oxford, Great Britain
1997 (April 27-30) Buffalo. USA
1998 (April 14-17) Sydney, Australia
1999 (April 11-15) Heidelberg, Germany
2000 (April 9-13) Shirahama, Japan
2001 (April 2-4) Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2002 (April 7-10) Kaohsiung, Taiwan
2003 (April 13-16) Genoa, Italy
2004 (April 4-7) Philadelphia, USA
2005 (March 20-25) Jena, Germany
2006 (April 9-12) Perth, Australia
2007 (April 10-13) Valencia, Spain
2008 (April 13-16) Osaka-Awaji, Japan
2009 (April 5-8) Krakow, Poland
2010 (March 28-31) Shanghai, China
2011 (April 17-20) Konstanz, Germany
2012 (April 1-4) Singapore
2013 (March 24-27) Maastricht, The Netherlands
2014 (April 13-16) Sydney, Australia
2015 (March 29-April 1) Göttingen, Germany
2016 (March 20-24) Taipei, Taiwan
2017 (April 9-12) Bordeaux, France
2018 (March 25-28) Singapore
2019 (April 14-17) London, UK
2020 (April 5-8) Osaka, Japan (cancelled)
2021 (March 28-31) Online
2022 (April 10-13) Porto, Portugal