IMAGING AND ELECTRON PHYSICSAberration–Corrected Electron Microscopy

Transmission electron microscopy
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Advances in Imaging and Electron Physics, Volume - 1st Edition

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Related Articles. These consist of a small metallic disc that is sufficiently thick to prevent electrons from passing through the disc, whilst permitting axial electrons.

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This permission of central electrons in a TEM causes two effects simultaneously: firstly, apertures decrease the beam intensity as electrons are filtered from the beam, which may be desired in the case of beam sensitive samples. Secondly, this filtering removes electrons that are scattered to high angles, which may be due to unwanted processes such as spherical or chromatic aberration, or due to diffraction from interaction within the sample. Apertures are either a fixed aperture within the column, such as at the condenser lens, or are a movable aperture, which can be inserted or withdrawn from the beam path, or moved in the plane perpendicular to the beam path.

Aperture assemblies are mechanical devices which allow for the selection of different aperture sizes, which may be used by the operator to trade off intensity and the filtering effect of the aperture. Aperture assemblies are often equipped with micrometers to move the aperture, required during optical calibration. Imaging methods in TEM use the information contained in the electron waves exiting from the sample to form an image. The projector lenses allow for the correct positioning of this electron wave distribution onto the viewing system.

Different imaging methods therefore attempt to modify the electron waves exiting the sample in a way that provides information about the sample, or the beam itself. From the previous equation, it can be deduced that the observed image depends not only on the amplitude of beam, but also on the phase of the electrons, although phase effects may often be ignored at lower magnifications. Higher resolution imaging requires thinner samples and higher energies of incident electrons, which means that the sample can no longer be considered to be absorbing electrons i.

Instead, the sample can be modeled as an object that does not change the amplitude of the incoming electron wave function, but instead modifies the phase of the incoming wave; in this model, the sample is known as a pure phase object. For sufficiently thin specimens, phase effects dominate the image, complicating analysis of the observed intensities. Figure on the right shows the two basic operation modes of TEM — imaging and diffraction modes.

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In both cases specimen is illuminated with the parallel beam, formed by electron beam shaping with the system of Condenser lenses and Condenser aperture. After interaction with the sample, on the exit surface of the specimen two types of electrons exist — unscattered which will correspond to the bright central beam on the diffraction pattern and scattered electrons which change their trajectories due to interaction with the material. In Imaging mode, Objective aperture is inserted in a back focal plane BFP of Objective lens where diffraction spots are formed. If using the Objective aperture, the central beam is selected the rest signal is blocked and the bright field image BF image is obtained.

If we allow the signal from the diffracted beam, the dark field image DF image is received. Then selected signal is magnified and projected on a screen or on a camera with the help of Intermediate and Projector lenses. Image of the sample is received. In Diffraction mode, Selected area aperture is used to determine the specimen area from which the signal will be displayed. By changing the strength of Intermediate lens, the Diffraction pattern is projected on a screen.

Diffraction is a very powerful tool for doing a cell reconstruction and crystal orientation determination. The contrast between two adjacent areas in a TEM image can be defined as the difference in the electron densities in image plane. Due to the scattering of the incident beam by the sample, the amplitude and phase of the electron wave change, which results in amplitude contrast and phase contrast , correspondingly. Most of images have both contrast components.

Amplitude—contrast is obtained due to removal of some electrons before the image plane. During their interaction with the specimen some of electrons will be lost due to absorption, or due to scattering at very high angles beyond the physical limitation of microscope or are blocked by the objective aperture. While the first two losses are due to the specimen and microscope construction, the objective aperture can be used by operator to enhance the contrast.

Figure on the right shows a TEM image a and the corresponding diffraction pattern b of Pt polycrystalline film taken without an objective aperture. In order to enhance the contrast in the TEM image the number of scattered beams as visible in the diffraction pattern should be reduced. This can be done by selecting a certain area in the diffraction plane like only the central beam or a diffracted beam, or combinations of beams with objective aperture to form BF c in case the central beam is included or DF d-e images in case the central beam is blocked.

DF images d-e are obtained using the diffracted beams indicated in diffraction pattern with circles b.

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Grains from which electrons are scattered into these diffraction spots appear brighter. More details about diffraction contrast formation are given further. There are two types of amplitude contrast — mass—thickness and diffraction contrast. When the beam illuminates two neighbouring areas with low mass or thickness and high mass or thickness , the heavier region scatters electrons at bigger angles. As a result, heavier regions appear darker in BF images have low intensity. Mass—thickness contrast is most important for non—crystalline, amorphous materials. Diffraction contrast occurs due to a specific crystallographic orientation of a grain.

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In such a case the crystal is in a so-called Bragg condition, whereby atomic planes are oriented in a way that there is a high probability of scattering. Thus diffraction contrast provides information on the orientation of the crystals in a polycrystalline sample. Note that in case diffraction contrast exists, the contrast cannot be interpreted as due to mass or thickness variations. Samples can exhibit diffraction contrast, whereby the electron beam undergoes Bragg scattering , which in the case of a crystalline sample, disperses electrons into discrete locations in the back focal plane.

By the placement of apertures in the back focal plane, i. If the reflections that are selected do not include the unscattered beam which will appear up at the focal point of the lens , then the image will appear dark wherever no sample scattering to the selected peak is present, as such a region without a specimen will appear dark.

This is known as a dark-field image. Modern TEMs are often equipped with specimen holders that allow the user to tilt the specimen to a range of angles in order to obtain specific diffraction conditions, and apertures placed above the specimen allow the user to select electrons that would otherwise be diffracted in a particular direction from entering the specimen.

Applications for this method include the identification of lattice defects in crystals. By carefully selecting the orientation of the sample, it is possible not just to determine the position of defects but also to determine the type of defect present.