Scanning Electron Microscopy

A Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) is an equipment used for the characterization of materials in micro and manometric scales. Basically, the SEM produces a beam of electrons that is accelerated towards the sample. When this beam hits the sample, it produces different signals due to the interaction of the electron with the matter. With the information generated from this process, we can obtain morphological, crystallographic, chemical and electronic information depending on the detector associated with the SEM.

SEM is a powerful analysis tool for both the industry and the academic community, as it allows the complete characterization of various materials at a wide variety of scales. Our laboratory, together with the Phase Transformation and Materials Characterization Group laboratory of the Chemical and Materials Engineering department (DEQM), offers analysis and monitoring services by trained personnel with years of experience in the area.

We have an ultra-high resolution SEM, Clara model from the company TESCAN, which can operate both in low and high vacuum and has a schottky-type Field Emission Gun (FEG) source for forming the beam of electrons of very reduced size providing a resolution of the order of nanometers. In this SEM, in addition to the conventional detectors that allow the analysis of morphology and contrast by atomic number of the microstructure, the following are also coupled: (i) an energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy system (EDS – Energy Dispersive X-Ray Spectroscopy) which enables chemical analysis; (ii) a backscatter electron diffraction system (EBSD – Electron Backscatter Diffraction) that allows crystallographic analysis; (iii) a cryogenic system that allows the freezing of fluids and biological material, thus achieving the analysis of this type of material by electronic microscopy.

A At the end of the service, the images and report of the EDS and EBSD analysis will be made available, containing the main results of interest in the form of images, graphs and tables.


a) Rose petal, b) cancer cell, c) asphaltene clusters, d) TiO2 nanoparticles

Infrastructure: Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) with cryogenic system for analysis of fluid samples, EDS and EBSD.


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