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Particle Analysis on Table Top Scanning Electron Microscopes

Particles in powder samples come in all shapes, sizes and compositions, and the requirements for their analysis and characterisation can be just as varied. Particle analysis tasks may require only morphological measurements from a single field of view or could require the combination of morphological and chemical data from many thousands of particles from a large sample area. A Table Top Microscope (TTM) equipped with an AZtecFeature X-Ray Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDS) system provides an extremely versatile platform for performing the full range of particle analysis applications.

AZtecFeature uses the capabilities of the TTM to acquire images which are used to locate particles in a sample. The AZtec X-Ray EDS detector is then used to collect a spectrum from each located particle. By controlling the TTM’s motorised stage, AZtecFeature performs this analysis over large areas of the sample, either to increase the population of particles analysed or to find particles that are sparsely distributed over the sample. The particles can be classified in terms of their morphological and/or chemical parameters, either during a run or after it ends. The classification results obtained during a run provide feedback of the types of particles being detected. These classifications can also be used to determine if additional analysis steps for individual particles are added or skipped. Finally, they can be used to control the termination of an analysis session, when specific analysis targets are achieved.

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