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You are here: Home » Testing & Characterization » Testing & Analysis Techniques » Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) with Energy Dispersive X-Ray Analysis (EDX)

Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) with Energy Dispersive X-Ray Analysis (EDX)

SEM provides detailed high resolution images of the sample by rastering a focussed electron beam across the surface and detecting secondary or backscattered electron signal.  An Energy Dispersive X-Ray Analyzer (EDX or EDA) is also used to provide elemental identification and quantitative compositional information.

SEM provides images with magnifications up to ~X50,000 allowing sub micron-scale features to be seen i.e. well beyond the range of optical microscopes.

  • Rapid, high resolution imaging with identification of elements present
  • Spatially resolved quantitative EDX (EDA) analysis of user defined areas on sample surface
  • Characterization of particulates and defects
  • Examination of grain structure and segregation effects
  • Coating thickness measurement using cross sectional imaging of polished sections.

Typical Applications

  • Characterization of material structures
  • Assessment of reaction interfaces, service environment and degradation mechanisms
  • Characterization of surface defects, stains and residues on metals, glasses, ceramics and polymers
  • Measurement of the thickness of layered structures, metallized layers, oxide films, composite materials using cross sectional imaging
  • Particulate and contaminant analysis on and within materials.

Typical Industries using SEM / EDX

  • Aerospace
  • Automotive
  • Materials
  • Minerals
  • Glass, Ceramics and Refractories
  • Healthcare
  • Medical Devices
  • Semiconductors
  • Electronics.

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  • SEM / EDX – At a Glance

    • Information: Secondary & backscattered electron images, elemental composition
    • Sample Size: Up to 200mm diameter and 80mm depth
    • Detection Limits: 100 - 0.1 wt.%
    • Elements Detected: B - U
    • Area Analysed: From 10mm x 10mm to ~1µm x 1µm
    • Sampling Depth: ~0.5µm - 3µm
    • Image Resolution: from mm to ~50nm
    • Data Output: High resolution Images, EDX spectra, composition tables
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