Scanning Electron Microscopy

Hitachi S-3600N with an Oxford INCA 350 EDX system providing the capability for elemental mapping and analysis.

The scanning electron microscope produces

  • high quality digital images of the surface structure of a specimen of up to 5 nm in size (with ideal conditions)
  • large depth of field
  • fine detail of the topography of the sample surface to be seen

This particular instrument has a large specimen chamber allowing samples of up to 25 cm in diameter to be

SEM image of dinosaur teeth
An SEM image of dinosaur teeth

analysed. It is commonly used to view

  • metals
  • geological samples (e.g. microfossils)
  • integrated circuits
  • inorganic thin films
  • semiconductors
  • crystals

Metallic samples require little preparation as the technique requires a conducting surface.

Non metallic samples are first coated in gold (included in the price) in order for a clear image to be taken. If this is not possible then ESEM and FEGSEM are suitable alternatives.

Submit an enquiry 


If you are unsure of your requirements, please submit an enquiry using the link above. We can offer bespoke testing parameters tailored to your needs.

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Contact Details

College of Science and Engineering
Physics Building
University of Leicester 
Tel: 0116 252 3497