The 1986 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded for the invention and design of the scanning tunneling microscope (STM) by Gerd Binnig (left) and Heinrich Rohrer (middle) and for the work on electron optics and the design of the electron microscope by Ernst Ruska (right). Both Binnig and Rohrer did their work on the STM, culminating in 1982 at the IBM Research Laboratory in Zurich, Switerland. Much of Ruska’s work on electron optics took place in the 1920s and 1930s in Germany. The Nobel Prize summary from 1986 notes that the electron microscope is “one of the most important inventions of this century.” Interestingly, Binnig, one of the inventors of the STM, also invented, along with Gerber and Quate, the AFM in 1986, the same year he won the Nobel Prize for his role in the development of the STM.