European HITACHI-Workshop at Fraunhofer IMWS

The Fraunhofer Institute for Microstructure of Materials and Systems IMWS expands its range of microstructure diagnostics with Hitachi's HF5000 field emission transmission electron microscope. The presentation of the new microscope took place during a workshop in Halle (Saale). In this meeting, international experts were presented with novel microscopy technologies as well as a demonstration of possible applications of the HF5000.

Mikroskop totale Aufnahme
© Fraunhofer IMWS
At Fraunhofer IMWS, the first HITACHI HF5000 in Europe was installed.
Mikroskop und Forscher
© Fraunhofer IMWS
Working with the new microscope provides researchers with even more precise insights into nanostructures.

The workshop focused on new research possibilities that arise with the HITACHI HF5000 for nano and surface analysis. By means of an electron beam obtained from a cold field emission source and an electron-optical probe corrector, subangstrom beam diameters can be generated. This provides researchers with even more precise insights into the nanostructure of, for example, glasses, glass-ceramics and optical layers. As a result, microstructural defects can be more clearly recognized, element distributions can be mapped more easily, and work on improving material properties will be significantly accelerated.

Global researchers and Hitachi experts spoke at the workshop about working with this cutting-edge microscopy technology. At Fraunhofer IMWS, the first HITACHI HF5000 in Europe was installed. Yasukuni Koga from Hitachi High-Technologies confirmed at the end of the workshop: "We are very pleased to have found a premium partner in Europe with the Fraunhofer IMWS, who fully utilizes the application possibilities of the HF5000. The workshop has confirmed that we can shape the future and expand technological boundaries through this great collaboration. "

The microscope in Halle is mainly used by the recently founded business unit »Optical Materials and Technologies« of the Fraunhofer IMWS. Prof. Thomas Höche, Head of this Business Unit, is particularly pleased by this unique selling point. During his presentation he spoke about the added value of the new microscope for the institute and its customers. »I'm proud that our team is the first in Europe to work with the HITACHI HF5000. We benefit from the outstanding quality of the element distribution mappings in particular as an applied research institution and thus the companies that we support in the improvement of their products. For example, we can identify microstructural vulnerabilities in materials used in the optical industry or the paint industry more quickly and offer solutions for avoiding them. Our business unit will not only characterize materials down to the atomic level, but also develop them." After the talk, attendees were given a tour to get to know the microscope, how it works, and the lab built specifically for the equipment.

The special feature of the high-resolution, analytical 200-keV scanning transmission electron microscope HF 5000, which combines the TEM and the STEM technology, is the significant increase in performance when acquiring STEM images. Due to the beam generation by means of cold field emission and the implemented probe corrector, the HF5000 can also be used for investigations with only 60 kV acceleration voltage. A special added value is provided by the detectors for the detection of excited X-ray radiation, which measure a spatial angle of 2.2 Steradians, which is three times the best TEM / STEM at Fraunhofer IMWS offer so far and contributes to the faster acquisition of elemental distribution images.