Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM)


A scanning electron microscope produces images of a sample by scanning over it with a high energy focused beam of electrons. Based on electron interactions with the sample secondary electrons, back-scattered electrons, and characteristic X-rays are produced and can be detected. The electron beam is generally scanned in a raster scan pattern, and the beam's position is combined with the detected signal to produce an image. about the sample's surface topography and composition. 

Our Zeiss Gemini300 fieldemission scanning electron microscope is equipped with variuos detectors for secondary and  backscatter electrons thus enabling a wide range of applications. The SEM  is mainly used for surface studies. Next to classic studies of taxonimic characters and of morphological alterations in transgenic plants, the nano VP technology also allows for high resolution studies of uncoated or frech material well into the nano range. The backscatter detector, enabling the detection of primary electrons, is a valuable tool for analyzing immunolabelling experiments. In these experiments tissues or cell fractions are labelled with gold-conjugated antibodies, often in combination with silver- or gold-enhancement. Whereas the soft parts are visualized with the normal, secondary electron, detector, the heavy metal components of the immunolabel can be selectively visualized with the backscatter detector.

For 3D-reconstrution at high structural resolution a Gatan Sytem is used for 3View Serial Block-Face Imaging.


Hitachi S 4100 Field emission scanning electron microscope

            Oxford cryo-transfer chamber