Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) Internet Sites. With the help of

Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) (From IOWA U. web site) Danny Porath 2003 Radiolarian (in Plankton) x 750 (...
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Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)

Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)

(From IOWA U. web site)

Danny Porath 2003

Radiolarian (in Plankton) x 750

(From IOWA U. web site)

Internet Sites

.. ..

Outline SEM/TEM: 1. Links and examples 2. Optics a. Ray diagrams b.Resolution c. Magnification

1. Bruce Kahn - RIT 2. Yossi Rosenwacks 3. Yosi Shacam – TAU 4. JEOL guide for SEM 5. “Electron Microscpy and Analysis”, P.J. Goodhew and F.J. Humphreys. 6. IOWA state U., Dept. of Material Science & Engineering site 7. …

Homework 2 1. Find on the web, in a paper or in a book the 3 most impressive SEM and TEM images: a. 1 - Technically b. 1 - Scientifically c. 1 - Aesthetically

Explain your choice. If needed compare with additional images.

3. SEM/TEM structure

3. Which types of analysis can be done by SEM/TEM beyond imaging. Explain shortly.

4. Electrons-surface interactions and signals

4. Be prepared to present each one of them to the class in 5 minutes.

5. Types of disturbances


With the help of…….

Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) Image (Leo 922 OMEGA)

Tunnelling device on the basis of a Si/Ge heterostructure

Si[110] taken on LEO 922 Lattic spacings: [111] = 0.31nm, [200] = 0.27nm

SEM Images (Leo 1530 and JEOL Guide to SEM)

Black widow spider x500

Cucumber skin x350

Big Radiolarian x500 and x2,000

SEM Image (Leo 1530)

High resolution image of a frozen, hydrated yeast

Uncoated chromite

SEM Images (Leo 1530 and JEOL Guide to SEM)

Staple in paper x35

Ceropia moth x350 and 15,000

Some History….

1611 Kepler suggested a way of making a compound microscope.

Toner x2,500

Gold particles x36,000

Eye of a fly x100

Kosher Salt x75

Integrated Circuit x720

Toilet Paper x500

SEM Imaging

1655 Hooke used a compound microscope to describe small pores in sections of cork that he called "cells". 1674 Leeuwenhoek reported his discovery of protozoa. He saw bacteria for the first time 9 years later. 1833 Brown published his microscopic observations of orchids, clearly describing the cell nucleus. 1838 Schleiden and Schwann proposed the cell theory, stating that the nucleated cell is the unit of structure and function in plants and animals.

2 nm

1857 Kolliker described the mitochondria in muscle cells. 1876 Abbé analyzed the effects of diffraction on image formation in the microscope and showed how to optimize microscope design. 1879 Flemming described with great clarity chromosome behavior during mitosis in animal cells. 1881 Retzius described many animal tissues with a detail that has not been surpassed by any other light microscopist. In the next two decades he, Cajal, and other histologists developed staining methods and laid the foundations of microscopic anatomy.


~4 nm gap

Before Au55 trapping

After Au55 trapping

Some (more) History….

1882 Koch used aniline dyes to stain microorganisms and identified the bacteria that cause tuberculosis and cholera. In the following two decades, other bacteriologists, such as Klebs ans Pasteur, identified the causative agents of many other diseases by examining stained preparations under the microscope.

s c i t p O

1886 Zeiss made a series of lenses, to the design of Abbé, that enabled microscopists to resolve structures at the theoretical limits of visible light. 1898 Golgi first saw and described the Golgi apparatus by staining cells with silver nitrate. 1924 Lacassagne and collaborators developed the first autoradiographic method to localize radioactive polonium in biological specimens. 1930 Lebedeff designed and built the first interference microscope. 1932 Zernike invented the phase-contrast microscope. These two developments allowed unstained living cells to be seen in detail for the first time. 1941 Coons used antibodies coupled to fluorescent dyes to detect cellular antigens. 1952 Nomarski devised and patented the system of differential interference contrast for the light microscope that still bears his name. 1981 Allen and Inoué perfected video-enhanced contrast light microscopy.

Various Optical Ray Diagrams


Image Through a Thin Lens


Light Sources

Two lens System and Magnification Transmission illumination




Reflected illumination SEM






Spectral range

The resolution depends on the lens ability to collect light (~1/f#) and inverse to the aperture number (NA)

f/#=f/D n – refractive index

NA=n sin(α) NA = 1/(2 f/#) Re solution = k1



Resolution … Airy Discs

Diffraction limited Resolution

Partially resolved

Laser beam Diffraction through a pinhole


100 µm

75 µm


~84 %

Rayleigh Resolution Criterion

Thus the smallest separation is determined by the N.A. (1/2f#) Typically the best objective has N.A ≈1.6 ⇒ resolution ≈170 nm For λ~400 nm (green light)

⇒ Decrease λ


R1= d1/2=0.61λ/nsin(α)= 0.61λ/NA

Electron Microscopy - Decreasing The Wavelength

The Evolution of Resolution

⇒ E=

p2 = eV 2m

Energy Conservation

⇒ p = 2meV P=


o h h 6.6 ⋅ 10−34 = = ≈ 0.05 A − 31 − 19 p 2meV 2 ⋅ 91 . ⋅ 10 ⋅ 16 . ⋅ 10 ⋅ 50000

Resolution (50 kV):





R1= 0.61λ/NA~(0.6 0.05)/1.6~0.2 Å

Magnifications (YBCO)

Depth of Focus





h=0.61λ/[nsin(α)tg(α)] Depth of focus, h, is the distance from the plane of optimum focus in which the beam diverges by no more than the spot diameter d1.

x2800 Optical

Depth of Field - the range of positions for the object for which our eye can detect no change in the sharpness of the image

SEM Operation


e r u t c u M St r

Magnification = length of TV screen/Scanning length

JEOL Optical System


SEM Operation

Beam's Path through the Column

Large WD:

SEM Ray Diagrams

• Demagnification decreases • Spot size increases • Divergence angle α decreased The decrease in demagnification is obtained when the lens current is decreased, which in turn increases the focal length f of the lens. The resolution of the specimen is decreased with an increased working distance, because the spot size is increased. Conversely, the depth of field is increased with an increased working distance, because the divergence angle is smaller.

The Electron Source

Small WD

Large WD

Light vs. Electron Microscopes

The electron source: Filament: Tungsten This filament is a loop of tungsten which functions as the cathode. A voltage is applied to the loop, causing it to heat up. The anode, which is positive with respect to the filament, forms powerful attractive forces for electrons.

LaB6 Gun


The Potential Distribution in the Tunsten Gun

Field Emission Gun

Field Emission Gun

Thermionic Emitter Materials

Gun Types SEM Cathode Comparison Tungsten filament


Schottky (TF)

Field Emission

Apparent Source Size

100 micrometers

5 micromete rs

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