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ER-C - Ernst Ruska-Centre for Microscopy and Spectroscopy with Electrons 
Analytical ServiceDate of Last update : 2013.12.02 Rivision Request
Keywords
Transmission electron microscopy, TEM, high-resolution TEM, HRTEM, scanning TEM, STEM, electron energy loss spectroscopy, EELS, energy dispersieve x-ray analysis, EDX, electron holography, electron tomography, in situ TEM, electron microscopy method development, aberration correction in (S)TEM, electron optics, solid state research, energy research materials
Description
The Ernst Ruska-Centre is one of the internationally leading centres for high-resolution microscopy and spectroscopy with electrons. In addition it is Germany?s first national user centre for high-resolution transmission electron microscopy with a specific focus on aberration-corrected microscopy. The ER-C is jointly operated by the J?lich Research Centre and RWTH Aachen University and develops scientific infrastructure and advanced methods for present and future materials research. It contains an extensive range of state-of-the-art electron microscopes, including a newly-installed chromatic aberration corrected FEI Titan 50-300 G3 electron microscope referred to as the PICO instrument and an FEI Titan G2 60-300 instrument dedicated to electron holography and in situ electron microscopy. The ER-C hosts more than 25 staff who have expertise in the development of advanced methods in electron optics, quantitative image analysis and spectroscopy on the atomic scale, electron holography, electron tomography and in situ electron microscopy on solid state materials. Recent scientific activities include measurements of lattice distortions in crystalline solids with a precision of one picometre, measurements of lens aberrations and information limits in electron microscopes, simultaneous acquisition of HAADF images and monolayer resolved EELS signals, atomic-scale bright-field electron tomography using negative Cs imaging at low acceleration voltages, software development for computer-based retrieval of quantum-mechanical object wave functions from defocus series of images and high-precision analysis and correction of residual electron optical aberrations. The ER-C thus creates the necessary conditions for innovation on other branches of technology. In its own application related research programmes, the ER-C focuses on atomic scale phenomena of the solid state. This work provides a solid basis for developing new concepts in energy research as well as micro- and nanoelectronics.
Application Area
Access to transmission electron microscopy and specimen preparation equipment
The ER-C provides external users from science and industry with access to the most powerful transmission electron microscopes available at the international level. External users will receive support from staff scientists and engineers at the ER-C, who will accompany them during demanding microscopic investigations, as well as during the required TEM specimen preparation and numerical data analysis. Fifty percent of the operation time of the ER-C?s electron microscopes is reserved for external users who will formally have to apply for measuring time by submitting suitable research proposals. Measurement periods are allocated to external users according to scientific criteria considering a priorisation laid down by a panel of reviewers appointed by the German Research Foundation. Details ? also on how to submit a proposal ? can be found at www.er-c.org as well as in the separate user rules and fee tables. In close cooperation with the in-house (S)TEM method development group, the ER-C offers efficient evaluation in order to enable external users to gain maximum information from the experimental images. This type of comprehensive user support takes on a key function in evaluating the reliability of the measured results. It is emphasised that the ER-C is not a service facility but a user centre, meaning that measurements are to be carried out by external users themselves with assistance and supervision of ER-C staff only. Service projects will not be considered for realisation.
Specifications

FEI Helios NanoLab 400 S FIB

The Helios NanoLab 400S is a focused ion beam (FIB) system to be operated in dual beam mode, i.e. the fully digital field emission scanning electron microscope (SEM) is supplemented with focused ion beam technology and flipstage assembly, also coming with a retractable multi-region STEM detector. Platinum gas chemistry is the preferred metal deposition when a high deposition rate and precision of the depostion are required. Other deposition materials may, however, be selected. Specially designed for ultra high resolution TEM sample prepration, the instrument is also equipped with an integrated argon ion gun capable of yielding a dramatically increased sample quality coming along with the removal of amorpheous specimen over- and underlayers covering conventionally prepared FIB samples. The system additionally allows for spatially resolved compositional analysis using the attached EDAX Genesis XM 4i X-ray microanalysis system.

FEI Technai G2 F20 (S)TEM

The Tecnai G2 F20 is a versatile field emission transmission electron microscope ideally suited for studying a wide range of general and advanced solid state materials.This analytical instrument, which is equipped with a compustage-driven side-entry double-tilt goniometer stage and an assortment of specimen holders, is optimised for imaging at medium resolution or for performing elemental microanalysis. Electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS), energy dispersive X-ray (EDX), and high angle annular darkfield (HAADF) signals for elemental microanalysis or spectral imaging can be collected either separately or simultaneously. Diffraction modes include convergent beam diffraction for three-dimensional structure information and micro-diffraction with a minimum probe size of 4nm. For these purposes, the instrument is equipped with an EDAX r-TEM SUTW detector and a Gatan Tridiem 863P spectrometer coupled to integrated computer systems running analytical software. This system can acquire and quantify EDX and EELS spectra to generate elemental maps and perform microstructural imaging.