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Cold Atom FIBSEM/AFM Laboratory

Location: Bldg. 216, Rm. E110

With the development of CNST’s cold atom ion source technology, we have created an applications laboratory where this type of source can be put to maximum use for studying the nanoscale role played by ionic species in various materials.  Battery materials are a particularly good example of this, where a cold-atom focused lithium ion beam can be used to inject small amounts of lithium with nanoscale precision into anode, cathode, and electrolyte samples to study transport as a function of local structure, composition and morphology.  Because the materials of interest are often sensitive to air exposure, particularly after lithiation, we have concentrated on developing in situ capabilities.  To this end we have assembled and constructed a unique collection of instruments that allow nanoscale ion implantation, electron beam imaging, morphological and elemental analysis, and multimode atomic force microscopy in an integrated manner.

Instrumentation Includes:

  • A state-of-the-art commercial field emission electron microscope/ focused-ion beam system (FIBSEM) with energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), electron backscattered diffraction (EBSD) analysis, and air-safe sample exchange capability.
  • A multimode atomic force microscope (AFM) integrated with the FIBSEM, allowing in situ topography, Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM), scanning capacitance microcopy (SCM), electrostatic force microscopy (EFM), magnetic force microscopy (MFM), scanning spreading resistance microscopy (SSRM), and scanning tunneling microscopy (STM).
  • Laser systems for cooling, trapping and ionizing lithium and/or cesium to make a cold atom ion source that will replace the gallium source on the FIBSEM.
  • A separate vacuum chamber compatible with the AFM system with optical access for in situ Raman spectroscopy and auxiliary chambers for sample preparation and lithiation.
Created October 18, 2017, Updated November 15, 2019