Novel handling routines for electron-microscopic studies of highly sensitive devices and materials


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Highly reactive or partly environmentally sensitive materials pave the way to the development of new technologies and devices for energy conversion and storage. To gain a understanding of fundamental material’s properties, structure formation during device fabrication and operational aspects like device degradation or failure, detailed microscopic investigation, although quite challenging due to the inherent properties of utilized materials, is indispensable.

To enable such studies, it is mandatory to preserve the native state of those reactive samples during preparation, e.g., while cross-sectioning complex devices. Particularly, the preparation and conservation of nanoscopic, electron transparent samples for electron microscopy (EM) commonly is challenging.

This contribution with battery and fuel-cell examples demonstrates the experimental capabilities, developments and projects at the DFG-funded Micro- and Nanoanalytics Core Facility of the University of Siegen and invites you to address your research issues. Dedicated equipment for uninterrupted cryogenic and inert-gas sample preparation and handling in conjunction with advanced cryo-EM allows for routine scale-bridging characterization by optical, X-ray, electron and ion microscopy and spectroscopy.

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