Scanning Microscopy


Recent advances in hardware and software make it possible to perform real-time image processing, and to do simultaneous analysis of the image characteristics in the transmission electron microscope (TEM). We have used a commercially available image processor and a suitable computer/TEM interface to build a automated computer-control system for a JEOL 4000EX TEM. We report here the characteristics of the system, which has direct access to all electronic controls of a JEOL 4000EX. The various microscope parameters are set by changing one parameter at a time while the image processor measures a specific image variable such as the variance. From the plot of the variable the program select its optimum value. Through-focus series are taken at the speed of one frame per second, which allows time for reaching electron lens stability, storage of the image, calculation of parameters such as contrast, and the plotting of values; all of this occuring while the image series is being generated. Results obtained using this system for on-line processing and computer control for crystalline and amorphous materials are presented.

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