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Dania Labira

Anstruk - 02
Homework - Tech. of Microstructural Analysis

1. Explain the image formation mechanism in Scanning Electron Microscope, and explain the difference
between primary and secondary electron.
2. Explain the basic mechanism of ion milling in Focused Ion Beam.
3. Mention the difference and advantage between secondary electron mode and secondary ion mode imaging
observation in Focused Ion Beam.
4. What is Kikuchi Bands? Explain how Kikuchi Bands formed in Electron Backscattered Diffraction.


1. A Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) scans a beam of electrons over a specimen to produce a
magnified image of an object.

SEM mechanism:
1) Electrons are fired into the machine.
2) The main part of the machine (where the object is scanned) is
contained within a sealed vacuum chamber because precise
electron beams can't travel effectively through air.
3) A positively charged electrode (anode) attracts the electrons
and accelerates them into an energetic beam.
4) An electromagnetic coil brings the electron beam to a very
precise focus, much like a lens.
5) Another coil, lower down, steers the electron beam from side to
6) The beam systematically scans across the object being viewed.
7) Electrons from the beam hit the surface of the object and bounce
off it.
8) A detector registers these scattered electrons and turns them
into a picture.
9) A hugely magnified image of the object is displayed on a TV

There are several important signals generated by SEM. From the inelastic reflection obtained secondary
electron signals (SE) and X-ray characteristics while the elastic reflection obtained backscattered electron
signal (BSE) / primary electron. The signals are described in the figure below.

The difference in the image of the secondary electron signals with the backscattered is as follows:
Secondary electrons produce the topography of the analyzed object, the higher surface is brighter than the low
surface. Whereas backscattered electrons give molecular weight differences from atoms that make up the
surface, atoms with high molecular weight will be brighter color than atoms with low molecular weight. An
example of the image comparison of these two signals is shown in the figure below.

The contrast mechanism of secondary electrons is illustrated by the figure beside.

Higher surfaces will release more electrons and produce brighter images than low
or flat surfaces.

Whereas the contrast mechanisms of backscattered electrons are described

with the image below which in principle atoms with greater density or molecular
weight will reflect more electrons so as to appear brighter than low-density atoms.
Then this technique is very useful to distinguish the types of atoms.

2. Focused Ion Beam (FIB) systems use a finely focused beam of ions (usually gallium) that can be operated
at low beam currents for imaging or at high beam currents for site specific s puttering or milling. As the
diagram below shows, the gallium (Ga+) primary ion beam hits the sample surface and sputters a small
amount of material, which leaves the surface as either secondary ions (i+ or i-) or neutral atoms (n0). The
primary beam also produces secondary electrons (e−). As the primary beam rasters on the sample surface,
the signal from the sputtered ions or secondary electrons is collected to form an image. At low primary
beam currents, very little material is sputtered and modern FIB systems can easily achieve 5 nm imaging
resolution (imaging resolution with Ga ions is limited to ~5 nm by sputtering and detector efficiency). At
higher primary currents, a great deal of material can be removed by sputtering, allowing precision milling
of the specimen down to a sub micrometer or even a nano scale.

3. -Secondary Electron Images on Focused Ion Beam shows intense grain orientation contrast, thus grain
morphology can be readily imaged without resorting to chemical etching. The contrast could also be
enhanced by careful selection of imaging.
-Secondary Ion Images on Focused ion Beam reveals chemical differences and are helpful for corrosion
studies because secondary ion yields of metals can increase by three orders of magnitude in the presence
of oxygen, clearly revealing corrosion.

4. Accelerated electrons in the primary beam of a scanning electron microscope (SEM) can be diffracted by
atomic layers in crystalline materials. These diffracted electrons can be detected when they impinge on a
phosphor screen and generate visible lines, called Kikuchi bands, or "EBSP's" (electron backscatter
patterns). These patterns are effectively projections of the geometry of the lattice planes in the crystal, and
they give direct information about the crystalline structure and crystallographic orientation of the grain
from which they originate.