Equipment and Applications

  • SE imaging provides high-resolution imaging of fine surface morphology.  The topography of surface features influences the number of electrons that reach the secondary electron detector from any point on the scanned surface. This local variation in electron intensity creates the image contrast that reveals the surface morphology.   Check out our SE image gallery.
  • Environmental SE Imaging has the same idea as the SE imaging except that positively charged ions are generated by beam interactions with the gas helping to neutralize the negative charge on the specimen surface. The pressure of gas in the chamber can be controlled, and the type of gas used can be varied according to need. Coating is thus unnecessary.  So this type of imaging is very useful for non-metallic and biological materials.
  • BSE imaging provides image contrast as a function of elemental composition, as well as, surface topography.  The production efficiency for backscattered electrons is proportional to the sample material's mean atomic number, which results in image contrast as a function of composition, i.e., higher atomic number material appears brighter than low atomic number material in a backscattered electron image.   Check out our BSE image gallery

  • An analytical technique used for the elemental analysis or chemical characterization of a sample.  It detects x-rays emitted from the sample during bombardment by an electron beam.  Its characterization capabilities are due in large part to the fundamental principle that each element has a unique atomic structure allowing X-rays that are characteristic of an element's atomic structure to be identified from one another.  Modern EDS vendors have software/hardware packages that are capable of chemistry identification, elemental mapping and quantitative(phase) mapping.  
  • Our EDS and EBSD detectors are both purchased from Oxford Instruments.

  • A microstructural-crystallographic technique used to examine the crystallographic orientation of many materials, which can be used to elucidate texture or preferred orientation of any crystalline or polycrystalline material.  EBSD can be used to index and identify the seven crystal systems, and as such it is applied to crystal orientation mapping, defect studies, phase identification, grain boundary and morphology studies, regional heterogeneity investigations, material discrimination, microstrain mapping, and using complementary techniques, physico-chemical identification. 
  • For details of all those applications, please check out EBSD website.

CL Imaging 

  • Collects cathodoluminescence emitted from the material, which is used to examine internal structures of semiconductors, rocks, ceramics, glass etc. in order to get information on the composition, growth and quality of the material.  The CL detector we have is from Gatan.  
  • If you are interested in learning more about cathodoluminescence, check out the page of CL theory.

Carbon Coater

Polishing Equipment