Scanning Electron Microscopes (SEM)


FEI DualBeam™ Focused Ion Beam Scanning Electron Microscope

FEI Helios Nanolab 600

This instrument is operated by Dualbeam Engineer Animesh Basak.
Located at Frome Road.

  • Information on the FEI Helios Nanolab 600

    The Helios Dualbeam was installed in Feb 2008 and is a flagship instrument of the AMMRF.

    In a single instrument platform it combines a high resolution scanning electron microscope (SEM) with high resolution focussed ion beam (FIB).

    The FIB uses a focused beam of Ga+ ions to sputter the surface of the sample to expose sub-surface features. The ion beam can also be used to form high resolution images if the beam current is kept low enough to avoid excessive surface sputtering.

    The addition of a high resolution SEM allows the collection of electron induced signals from the exposed surfaces. These include secondary and back-scattered electron images, characteristic x-ray and electron back-scattered diffraction images for analysis of crystal structure,

    crystallographic orientation and phase type. The instrument also has a solid state STEM detector allowing the imaging of very thin samples.

    Instrument capabilities:

    • Sample machining
    • Sample cross-sections
    • 3D microscopy
    • Slice and view
    • TEM foil preparation
    • Atom probe needles
    • Feature size measurement
    • Site specific sample selection
    • Sample selection, placement and shaping
    • Micro-analytical investigating
    • EDXS - Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy
    • The collection of the emitted x-rays by a solid state detector and the measurement and display of their energy distribution. This makes possible the identification, quantification and mapping of elements in a solid sample.
    • EBSD- Electron Back - Scattered Diffraction
    • OIM - Orientation Imaging Microscopy
    • The measurements of local orientation by the collection of patterns formed by diffraction of back - scattered electrons within the crystal structure
    • ‘Delpi' - a program which allows the simultaneous collection of EBSD and EDXS data. This makes it Possible to use sample chemistry to aid in phase identification when materials have similar diffraction patterns.

    For more details regarding the FIB's capabilities go to:

Quanta 450

FEI Quanta 450 FEG Environmental Scanning Electron Microscope (ESEM)

Please contact Mr Ken Neubauer for further information.
Located at Frome Road.

  • Information on the SEM FEI Quanta 450 FEG Environmental SEM + Oxford Ultim Max Large Area SDD EDS Detector

    The FEI Quanta 450 is a High Resolution Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope capable of operation in three different modes: High Vacuum, Low Vacuum and Environmental SEM (ESEM). As well as a standard sample stage, the instrument also has cooling, heating and tensile stages. The Quanta 450 is used to image and analyse surface topography and morphology, collect backscattered electron images and characterise and determine a sample's elemental composition via energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDS). It has an Oxford Ultim Max Large Area SDD EDS detector with Oxford AZtec EDS processing software and also has live mapping functionality.

    • High Vacuum mode allows for high resolution imaging of surface topography (up to 1000000x magnification).
    • Low Vacuum mode allows for imaging and characterisation of non-conductive samples.
    • ESEM mode allows in situ imaging of wet samples, which is ideal for plant material and other biological specimens. It can also be used for in situ observation of processes such as hydration and dehydration, corrosion and crystallisation.
    • X-ray analysis for determination of elemental composition with an Oxford Ultim Max Large Area SDD EDS detector with Oxford AZtec EDS processing software.

    The stage has a lateral movement range of 100mm and a vertical movement range of 60mm.

    Applications for the Quanta 450 are wide ranging and include imaging and microanalysis of metals, semiconductors, materials and their defects, coatings, particles, fibres and geological and biological samples.


Hitachi FlexSEM 1000 SEM

Please contact Dr Gwen Mayo for further information.
Located at Waite facility.

  • Information on the Hitachi FlexSEM 1000 SEM

    The Hitachi Flex Scanning Electron Microscope FlexSEM 1000 IIM 1000 features a SE detector, high-sensitivity 4-segment BSE detector and UVB detector, and a pre-centred tungsten filament and accelerating voltages of 1-20 kV.

    The ultra-variable-pressure detector enables observation of the surface of non-conducting specimens without coating.

Hitachi SU1510 SEM

Hitachi SU1510 SEM

Please contact Ms Aoife McFadden for further information.
Located at Frome Road.

  • Information on the Hitachi SU1510 SEM

    The Hitachi SU1510 SEM is a tungsten filament SEM equipped with a secondary electron (SE) detector and a backscatter electron (BSE) detector.

    The system allows for variable pressure operation which means non-conductive samples can be imaged uncoated.

    With a sample stage that can accommodate samples up to 153mm in diameter the SU1510 is ideal as a pre-screening tool for high resolution SEM samples.


Hitachi SU3800 Automated Mineralogy SEM

Please contact Ms Aoife McFadden for further information.
Located at Frome Road.