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Environmental Scanning Electron (ESEM) Microscopy

Environmental Scanning Electron (ESEM) Microscopy Picture
Room: JAB-2141
Phone: (514) 340-4711 poste 7348


ESEM Quanta 200 FEG

ESEM with field-emission electron gun, EDAX energy-dispersive spectroscopy (light-element capability), Peltier-effect heating/cooling stage, 1000o heating stages, Everhart-Thornley secondary electron detector (ETD), gaseous secondary electron detector (GSED for imaging in 'wet' mode), backscattered electron detector (BSD for high-resolution atomic number contrast imaging), large field detector (LFD for imaging in Low Vacuum mode), CCD infrared camera for imaging in real time inside the analysis room, plus other options.

ESEM Quanta 200 FEG operation modes

The Quanta has a Schottky field-emission source gun and three modes of imaging and analysis:
  High vacuum for characterization of conductive samples,
  Low vacuum (<200 Pa), for analysis of non-conductive samples,
  Environmental (ESEM) mode (<4000 Pa) for studying wet organic or inorganic materials.

What can ESEM do?

  • Gas ionization in the sample chamber eliminates the charging artifacts, typically seen with nonconductive samples. So the specimens do not need to be coated with a conductive film.
  • The ESEM can image wet, dirty and oily samples (the contaminants do not damage or degrade the image quality).
  • ESEM can acquire electron images from samples as hot as 1000°C, because the Gaseous Secondary Electron Detector (GSED) is insensitive to heat.
  • The detector is also insensitive to light. Light from the sample, for example incandescence from heated samples, cathodoluminescence and fluorescence do not interfere with imaging.
  • ESEM eliminates the need for conductive coating, so delicate structure, which was often damaged during the sample preparation, can be imaged.
  • ESEM can acquire x-ray data from insulating samples at high accelerating voltage.
  • Eliminating the need for sample preparation, makes it possible to investigate speciment in dynamic processes, such as tension, compression, deformation, crack propagation, adhesion, heating, cooling, freezing, melting, hydration, dehydration and sublimation.