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Analytical Techniques
Scanning Electron Microscopy SEM / EDX Analysis
SEM Principle and Instruments
Particle Contamination Identification
SEM/EDX Automated Particle Characterisation and Analysis
Pharmaceutical Particle Counting
Particle Identification Methodology
Debris, Particles and Fibres in Food, Drink and Pharmaceuticals
Metallographic Preparation
Optical Microscopy and Image Analysis
Paint, Adhesive, Sealant and Gasket Filler Fingerprinting

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Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) has many applications across a multitude of industry sectors. It can produce extremely high magnification images (up to 200000x) at high resolution up to 2nm combined with the ability to generate localised chemical information (EDX). This means the  SEM/EDX instrument is a powerful and flexible tool for solving a wide range of product and processing problems for a diverse range of metals and materials.

LPD Lab Services has 2 SEM instruments and has extensive experience in using SEM/EDX analysis in many industrial sectors;
electronics and semiconductors,pharmaceutical, petrochemicals, plastics and polymers, aerospace,automotive, medical devices, engineering, chemicals, materials and metallurgy .

 Typical SEM Applications include:-

SEM sample load into chamberRange of Materials for Investigation by SEM/EDX:-

Examples Applications / Case Studies

Image Magnification, Measurement and Resolution

 CD StamperThe image is of the surface of a metal stamper used to imprint the information onto a compact disc during manufacture.

The image was taken at a magnification of X 40,000 on the SEM. The photograph illustrates the shape and structure of individual bits of information. The height, roughness and steepness of the sidewalls of the information are all critical to the manufacture of a good disc, as is the separation between adjacent tracks.


Fracture cross-sectionThe second image is of a fracture section through a pellet made of tungsten powder that has been sintered and then sputter coated with an alloy of osmium and ruthenium.

The output from both the secondary electron and backscatter detectors has been mixed together on the SEM to highlight the sputtered layer on the surface of the pellet. This enables accurate measurement of the thickness of the sputtered layer and shows the growth structure through the layer. The thickness of the layer was measured at 640 nm.

Analysis of Thin Films

EDX spectrum of thin evaporated layerEDX analysis was carried out on a thin evaporated layer on top of a nickel / iron alloy.

The layer contained a mixture of barium, strontium and oxygen, with a small amount of magnesium. The thickness of the layer was calculated to be ~ 38 nm.




If you would like to discuss your problem with us and find out how SEM/EDX can help you, please contact us and find out how we can help you today.

Our site expert on SEM/EDX Spectrometry is Keith Raper.

Application Notes
Document Title View
Identification of the type and source of particulate contamination in a ceramic component using SEM/EDX.
Pharmaceutical Particle Counting, Size Measurement and Chemical Analysis by SEM/EDX
Contaminant Particle Identification and Elimination
Determination of Surface Tension and Wettability of Liquid on Solid Surfaces
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