Surreal picture of the atomic world obtained using a 4D microscope

Non-destructive testing technique, allowingto evaluate the atomic and molecular structure of the material, received a powerful impetus thanks to the new invention of a group of scientists from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (USA). As a result of using the 4D-STEM technology used in the work of a microscope of a sparing type, science discovered the internal microstructure of the material.

Earlier use of electron microscopes inThe study of substances at the atomic level had significant technical limitations and was suitable only for the study of substances with a strong atomic lattice. Conditionally soft substances could be destroyed by electron beams and X-ray devices were used to study them. The 4D-STEM methodology completely changes the conditions for studying the atomic structure of materials.

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Research results are given on the sample.analysis of the structure of metallic glass with an unpredictable structure of the crystal lattice. Analysis using 4D-STEM revealed weaknesses in the material that could lead to destruction or deformation. Another experiment was conducted in studying the atomic structure of a semiconductor before and after the introduction of a special additive that changes its physical properties.

So using 4D-STEM will allowScientists study a variety of materials by presenting their inner world through visualization of molecular and atomic structural maps. At the same time, even materials that are hypersensitive to external influences can be used for analysis.

Source: Nature