Our instruments

Our state-of-the-art electron microscopy facilities allow researchers to see and measure things at the micro, nano and atomic scales.


Our microscopes

Scanning electron microscopes (SEMs) and transmission electron microscopes (TEMs) differ from conventional light microscopes in that they employ electrons rather than photons to irradiate material and produce images.

The material being studied should be a solid material and be able to withstand the energy of the electrons being directed at it.

Electron microscopes can analyse most materials, including:

  • plastics
  • metals and metal compounds
  • semiconductors
  • rocks and minerals
  • plant and animal materials
  • some liquids.

FEI Quanta 3D FEG FIB-SEM

The FEI Quanta 3D FEG FIB-SEM enables imaging, analysis and manipulation of microstructures using a combination of a field-emission gun scanning electron microscope with a gallium focused ion beam and a platinum gas-injection system.

Applications:

  • Site-specific sectioning with imaging, EDS or EBSD
  • Serial sectioning with imaging, EDS or EBSD
  • Site-specific sample preparation for TEM and APT
  • Nano-scale and micro-scale milling, deposition and fabrication
  • In-situ mechanical and electrical testing

Features:

Detectors

  • Secondary electron (SE): Everhart-Thornley
  • Backscatter electron (BSE): Solid State Diode
  • Energy dispersive X-ray (EDX): Apollo
  • Electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD): Hikari

Accessories

  • Micromanipulator
  • Spring table and force measurement system
  • Sub-stage for mechanical and electrical testing

Automation software

  • Multi-site milling (AutoFIB)
  • TEM specimen preparation (AutoTEM)
  • Serial sectioning and imaging (Slice and View)
  • Serial sectioning and EBSD/EDS (EBS3)

Data acquisition software

  • Energy dispersive X-ray (EDX): Genesis
  • Electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD): OIM

Data processing software

  • 2D images (Photoshop, ImageJ)
  • 3D images (Amira, Avizo, Paraview)
  • 2D EBSD data (Channel, CrossCourt, OIM)
  • 3D EBSD data (Dream3D, OIM)

Specifications:

Electron optics

  • FEG source, high current electron column
  • Accelerating voltage: 0.2 to 30 kV
  • Probe current: Up to 200 nA
  • Magnification: 30 x to 1280 kx (Quad Mode)

Ion optics

  • Ga liquid metal ion source, high current ion column
  • Accelerating voltage: 2 to 30 kV
  • Probe current: 1 pA to 65 nA
  • Magnification: 40 x to 1280 kx (Quad Mode)
  • Charge neutralisation mode

Electron beam resolution

  • High vacuum: 1.2 nm at 30 kV (SE), 2.5 nm at 30 kV (BSE), 2.9 nm at 1 kV (SE)
  • Low vacuum: 1.5 nm at 30 kV (SE), 2.5 nm at 30 kV (BSE), 2.9 nm at 3 kV (SE)
  • Extended low vacuum (ESEM): 1.5 nm at 30 kV (SE)

Ion beam resolution

  • 7 nm at 30 kV at beam coincident point, 5 nm at 30 kV at optimal working distance

Chamber vacuum

  • High vacuum: < 6E-4 Pa
  • Low vacuum: 10 to 130 Pa
  • Extended low vacuum (ESEM): 10 to 4000 Pa

Micromanipulator

  • Range: 240° on A-axis, 240° on B-axis, 12 mm on C-axis
  • Resolution: 10-7 rad on A-axis, 10-7 rad on B-axis, < 0.5 nm on C-axis
  • Torque / Force: 3 – 4 Nmm on A-axis, 3 – 4 Nmm on B-axis, 1 N on C-axis
  • Tips: R100 nm sharp tip, R100 nm cube corner, ø1 µm flat punch

Spring Table and Force Measurement Analysis System

  • Force Range: 10 nN to 50 mN
  • Displacement Range: Depends on SEM image magnification and resolution

Sub-stage

  • Force: Maximum 4 N, Resolution: 250 µN
  • Displacement: Maximum 20 mm, Resolution 0.5 nm, Repeatability 100 nm
  • Electrical Measurement: Maximum 50 mA DC using user-supplied equipment

Contact: Dr Mark Nave, Dr Adam Taylor, Dr Jiangting Wang

Zeiss Supra 55VP FEG SEM

The Supra 55VP is a high resolution scanning electron microscope (SEM) that uses a Schottky-type field-emission gun (FEG). The microscope has variable pressure (VP) capability enabling the study of non-conductive materials.

Features

  • Lens-mounted angular selective backscatter (AsB) detector with high crystal orientation sensitivity with sub-micron spatial resolution.
  • Oxford Instruments Aztec EBSD and EDS system with a Nordlys-F EBSD detector (with forescatter imaging capabilities) and an X-Max 20 mm2 drift EDS detector.
  • Variable pressure secondary electron (VPSE) detector.
  • High efficiency In-lens secondary electron detector.
  • High current mode.
  • 0.02 to 30 kV operating range.
  • In-situ mechanical testing capability via a Kammrath & Weiss system. Up to 800°C with a 1 kN and 5 kN load cells.

Contact: Dr Huaying (Maggie) Yin, Dr Adam Taylor

JEOL NeoScope Tabletop SEM

The NeoScope is an easy to use compact tabletop SEM with low vacuum capability for imaging of non-conductive material. It has a secondary electron (SE) detector and backscatter electron (BSE) detector that can be used when the microscope is in a low vacuum condition.

Contact: Dr Huaying (Maggie) Yin

ZEISS LEO 1530 FEG SEM

The LEO 1530 is a high resolution scanning electron microscope (SEM) that uses a Schottky-type field-emission gun (FEG).

Features:

  • Oxford Instruments Aztec EBSD system with Nordlys S detector with forescatter imaging capabilities.
  • Retractable backscattered electron detector (BSD).
  • High efficiency In-lens secondary electron detector.
  • 200 V to 30 kV operating range.
  • In-situ mechanical testing capability via a Kammrath & Weiss system. Up to 800°C with a 1 kN and 5 kN load cells. Tilt option for combined EBSD mapping.

Contact: Dr Huaying (Maggie) Yin, Dr Adam Taylor

JEOL JEM 2100 TEM



The JEOL JEM-2100 is a high-performance Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) with a Lanthanum Hexaboride (LaB6) electron source for analyses at the sub-nanometre level in materials science, nanotechnology and life science.

Features:

High resolution imaging with specialist characterisation capabilities of EDS and Cryo Imaging.

Specifications:

  • 200 kV TEM HR version with LaB6 source
  • Operating kV: 80 to 200

Spot diameter

  • TEM mode: 20 to 200 nm
  • EDS, NBD & CBD mode: 1.0 to 25 nm

Magnification range

  • LOW MAG mode: 50x to 6,000x
  • MAG mode: 2000x to 1,500,000x

Resolution

  • Point: 0.23 nm
  • Lattice 0.14 nm

Image capture

  • GATAN Orius SC1000 camera: Progressive interline device, Sensor area 36 x 24 mm, 4008 x 2672 pixels (9 µm ea)
  • BF and HAADF STEM detectors

Additional Characterisation Capabilities:

JEOL JED-2300T Energy Dispersive X-Ray Analyser, Dry SD30GV Detector 0.26 sr

  • Effective area of detector: 30 mm2
  • Energy resolution (FWHM): 133 eV
  • Detectable element range: B to U

Cryo TEM imaging with Gatan 914 series Cryo-transfer Tomography Holder

Contact: Rosey Squire, Dr Huaying (Maggie) Yin

JEOL JEM 2100F FEG TEM

The JEOL JEM-2100F is a high-performance Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) with a field emission electron source for analyses at the atomic/molecular level in materials science, nanotechnology and life science.

Features:

High resolution imaging with specialist characterisation capabilities of EDS, EFTEM, EELS, and ACOM.

Specifications:

200kV TEM HR version with ZrO/W (100) field emission source

Spot diameter

  • TEM mode: 2-5 nm
  • EDS, NBD & CBD mode: 0.5 to 2.4 nm

Magnification range

  • LOW MAG mode: 50x to 6,000x
  • MAG mode: 2000x to 1,500,000x

Resolution

  • Point: 0.23 nm
  • Lattice: 0.1 nm

Image capture

  • GATAN Orius SC1000 camera: Progressive interline device, Sensor area 36 x 24 mm, 4008 x 2672 pixels (9 µm ea)
  • BF and HAADF STEM detectors

Additional Characterisation Capabilities

  • JEOL JED-2300TPlus Dry SD60GV Detector
    • Effective area of detector: 60 mm2
    • Energy resolution (FWHM): 133 eV or better (at 55Fe, 5.9 keV)
    • Window: Super UTW (ultra-thin window) type
    • Detectable element range: B to U
  • GATAN GIF Quantum 965 Post column energy filter and EELS spectrometer. Energy resolution 0.10 eV FWHM
  • NanoMEGAS ASTAR Automated Crystal Orientation and phase mapping package for TEM
  • GATAN 648 Vacuum Transfer Holder

Contact: Rosey Squire, Dr Huaying (Maggie) Yin

JEOL JSM 7800F FEG-SEM

The JSM-7800F is an ultrahigh resolution scanning electron microscope (SEM) that uses a Schottky-type field-emission gun (FEG). The system includes the JEOL Super Hybrid Lens (SHL) reducing the chromatic and spherical aberrations which leads to improved resolution, especially at low accelerating voltages.

Features:

  • 4 types of detectors; upper electron detector (UED), upper secondary electron detector (USD), backscattered electron detector (BED) and a lower electron detector (LED).
  • Beam deceleration with gentle beam (GB) mode provides charge balance and high-resolution imaging.
  • Energy filtered imaging allowing secondary and backscattered electrons to be selected accurately, even at low accelerating voltages.
  • Large depth of field mode.
  • Oxford Instruments Aztec EBSD and EDS system with a Nordlys-nano EBSD detector (with forescatter imaging capabilities) and an X-Max 50 mm2 drift EDS detector.
  • Scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM) detector with bright-field and dark-field imaging.
  • 0.01 kV to 30 kV.

Contact: Dr Adam Taylor

Cameca LEAP 5000 XR Atom Probe

The LEAP 5000 XR is a cutting-edge local electrode atom probe instrument with a reflectron system for high resolution by time-of-flight mass spectroscopy. This technique offers atom by atom, 3D reconstruction of materials resulting in chemical analysis with near-atomic scale spatial resolution. The UV laser allows metals, semiconductors and insulators alike to be analysed.

Features:

  • Voltage and laser pulsing mode.
  • Advanced laser pulsing capable of repetition rates of up to 500 kHz.
  • Specimen temperature 25 – 100 K.
  • Up to 108 atoms per hour.
  • 200 nm field of view.

Contact: Dr Adam Taylor, Dr Ross Marceau