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Symmetry S2®

Symmetry S2 is the only genuine all-in-one EBSD detector on the market, and is based on the revolutionary Symmetry detector, the world’s first EBSD detector to utilise advanced CMOS technology. Exceptional performance for all EBSD applications is combined with ease of use and a range of innovative design features. Highlights include:

  • Guaranteed indexing speeds in excess of 4500 pps

  • 1244 x 1024 pixel resolution – ideal for high angular resolution (HR) EBSD

  • Unique fibre-optic coupling with sub-pixel distortion

  • Extreme sensitivity, benefiting all types of analysis

  • Software controlled detector tilting

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Symmetry S2

Symmetry S2 uses a customised CMOS sensor and fibre optics to unlock a unique and powerful combination of speed, sensitivity, and diffraction pattern detail. Symmetry S2, in combination with the AZtec software, delivers exceptional performance on all materials and for all measurements. The highest analysis speed of Symmetry S2, in excess of 4500 pps, enables texture and grain size characterisation in a matter of seconds, yet this is achieved without requiring high beam currents or sacrificing pattern resolution. This means that these high speeds can be achieved even on challenging, real-world samples such as multiphase light metal alloys or deformed steels.

In addition, Symmetry S2 can collect distortion-free, megapixel resolution EBSPs for detailed strain and phase analyses. This is a detector to suit all applications, enhanced by innovative features such as software controlled tilting (with dynamic calibration) and a unique proximity sensor.

When an EBSD detector has no compromise, no application is beyond your reach.

The Symmetry S2 detector has an outstanding performance coupled with ease of use, making it the ideal detector for all EBSD applications:

  • Guaranteed indexing speeds > 4500 patterns per second (pps)
  • Fibre-optic lens delivering unrivalled sensitivity
  • Highest sensitivity > 800 pps / nA
  • 156 x 88 pixel resolution at maximum speed
  • Full megapixel resolution (1244 x 1024) patterns – ideal for high angular resolution (HR)-EBSD strain analyses
  • Sub-pixel distortion, ensuring an angular precision below 0.05°
  • Software controlled tilting interface coupled with autocalibration – perfect positioning and indexing for all sample sizes and geometries
  • Unique proximity sensor – detects potential collisions before they happen and automatically moves the detector to a safe position
  • Five integrated forescatter detectors (optional), providing full colour complementary channelling contrast and atomic number contrast images.
  • Bellows SEM interface, maintaining the microscope’s vacuum integrity
  • Simple and intuitive detector settings, ensuring optimum results every time

The performance of the Symmetry S2 detector is enabled by the powerful AZtecHKL acquisition platform, backed up by the fastest and most modern EBSD data processing software, AZtecCrystal. The comparison table below will help you to choose the best software package to deliver the flexibility and functionality that you require.

Feature Description AZtecHKL AZtecHKL AZtecHKL
Standard Advanced Automated
AZtec EBSD Mapping  Point Analyses,LineScans and Maps
ReAnalysis Reprocess datasets with stored patterns
AZtec Synergy  Fully integrates Oxford Instruments EDS & EBSD systems with simultaneous EDS and EBSD maps /linescans
AZtec PhaseID  Combines EDS & EBSD data to identify unknown phases
AZtec Data Analysis  Data Clean, Grain Detection & Size Analysis, Map Editor
AZtecCrystalStandard Modern, standalone EBSD data processing software incl.maps, pole/inverse pole figures and grain analysis
AZtec TruPhase  Real time differentiation of similar crystal structures using EDS O
AZtec Autolock  Predictive and reactive specimen drift correction O
Colour FSD  Colour visualisation of orientation and Z-contrast images O
PseudoSymmetry Solves orientation measurements in materials where different orientations deliver similar EBSPs O
AZtecHKL Steel  Reclassify phase tool for phase separation and dedicated steel phase database O
AZtecCrystal Advanced Comprehensive standalone data processing package, incl. ODFs, materials properties and an advanced classify tool O
AZtec Large Area Mapping  Acquire and stitch multiple fields to characterise large sample areas O O
AZtec Image Registration  Register and use an image for specimen navigation O O
AZtec MapQueue  Schedule acquisition of multiple experiments O O
CIF Import Import Crystal Information Files for phase definition O O
Magnetic Field Correction  Correct EBSD pattern distortion from immersion lens fields O O O
AZtec 3D Automated acquisition of 3D datasets on compatible FIB-SEMs O O

O: Available as Option

Application Notes using Symmetry 

EBSD analysis of Lead Halide Perovskites using Symmetry

Methylammonium Lead Halides (MALHs) are organic crystal compounds used in solar cells, LEDs, LASERs and photodetectors. Recent improvements to EBSD detectors now allows for their characterisation of grain size and texture.

High resolution EBSD Mapping of Martensitic Steel

Martensitic structures are traditionally challenging to measure with EBSD. Here, the sensitivity and pattern detail provided by Symmetry enables exceptional results from a martensitic stainless steel.

High Sensitivity EBSD Detectors

CMOS-based EBSD detectors enable faster and more sensitive analyses of samples. Sensitivity is related to the full-system efficiency, or Detective Quantum Efficiency (DQE).

Why high sensitivity is essential for unlocking the power of CMOS-based EBSD detectors

CMOS-based EBSD detectors enable faster and more sensitive analyses of samples.


Symmetry S2 Demonstration  

Watch our latest demonstration of the only all-in-one EBSD detector Symmetry S2. 


EBSD without limits...

Recorded live from our Spotlight session, at the virtual meeting M&M 2020. In this session, expert Dr. Pat Trimby introduces the new Symmetry S2 fibre-optically coupled EBSD detector.  

Viewing time: 30 minutes


The Symmetry S2’s combination of extreme speed, sensitivity and versatility makes it the only EBSD detector that can cover all application areas. This includes:

Rapid quality control of materials properties

  • Symmetry S2’s maximum analysis speed of >4500 pps enables the measurement of key sample properties in just seconds
  • Here the grain size of a duplex stainless steel has been analysed to ASTM E2627 standard in less than 80 s, measuring > 2000 grains.
  • Similarly rapid characterisation of texture and phase fraction makes the Symmetry S2 ideal for quality control and high sample throughput applications
  • High speed analyses can be completed on a wide range of materials, using only moderate beam currents (16.4 nA)

High speed analysis of beam-sensitive samples

  • The unique fibre-optic lens within the Symmetry S2 detector delivers unparalleled sensitivity, ensuring not only excellent data from beam-sensitive materials but performance benefits on all sample types
  • Here a quartz (SiO2) rock sample has been effectively analysed in under 12 minutes at 1900 pps, using only a moderate beam current
  • Symmetry S2’s sensitivity ensures you to utilise the detectors exceptional speeds in all applications, delivering significant throughput advantages

Detailed analysis of strained samples

  • In order to characterise strain effectively, a detector with megapixel resolution and minimal distortion is essential
  • Symmetry S2 is the only detector that can satisfy these criteria – full 1244 x 1024 pixel diffraction patterns are ideal for high angular resolution (HR) EBSD, with every detector guaranteeing sub-pixel distortion
  • This example shows how high quality EBSPs coupled with AZtec’s Refined Accuracy indexing mode can characterise dislocation cells within a strained Ni sample

Analysis of any sample size

  • Large samples are difficult to analyse using conventional EBSD detectors, since they need to be analysed at long working distances (WD) in the SEM, this compromising the standard EBSD geometry
  • Symmetry S2, with its software-controlled tilting, can be positioned at the ideal geometry for every sample type, from TEM foils to cm-scale samples (such as in-situ testing samples or geological thin sections)
  • The map shows EBSD data from a large mechanical test Ti64 alloy sample, with the grain orientation data used to calculate the Young’s Modulus in the loading direction

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