Multimodal Integrated Structural and Compositional Materials Analysis

National Laboratory: 
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Characterization Class: 
Mechanical Behavior of Materials

Located at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory houses an integrated set of sample handling, imaging, and analysis capabilities that enable a range of materials and interfacial analyses to be conducted on either the same or related samples. The resulting complementary analyses provide the diverse information needed to relate materials characteristics to various types of performance. EMSL’s capabilities include transmission electron microscopy (TEM), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), atom probe microscopy (APT), time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS), nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry (nanoSIMS), secondary electron/focused ion beam (dual beam) microscopy, and sample preparation and helium-ion microscopy. Specific instruments have additional capabilities for real-time, in situ analysis, enabling time evolution of structures and reaction layers to be examined.

Capability Bounds: 

This capability requires small samples (~mms) and a well-defined problem that is not appropriate for rapid screening and rapid throughput.

Unique Aspects: 

The capability involves a range of staff expertise, coupled with a complementary set of instruments within a controlled atmosphere and unique multi-instrument sample handling capabilities. Unique cells enable in situ probes or time-resolved analysis in realistic conditions. These have been significantly used for observing structural changes and defect introduction into materials (TEM based) and the interaction of materials in liquid environments (ToF-SIMS and TEM).


Much of this instrumentation is part of the EMSL national user facility, which is accessible via a user proposal process.

Single Point of Contact: 

Name: Donald Baer
Phone: 509-781-1326

  1. Devaraj, A., R. Colby, V. Shutthanandan, V. Subramanian, C. Wang, D.E. Perea and S. Thevuthasan, Characterization of embedded metallic nanoparticles in oxides by cross-coupling aberration-corrected STEM and Atom Probe Tomography, Microscopy and Microanalysis / Volume 18 / Supplement S2 / July 2012, pp 912-913
  2. Bingwen Liu, Xiao-Ying Yu, Zihua Zhu, Xin Hua, Li Yang and Zhaoying Wang In situ chemical probing of the electrode–electrolyte interface by ToF-SIMS, Lab Chip, 2014, 14, 855-859
  3. Jones RH, DR Baer, MJ Danielson, and JS Vetrano. 2001 "Role of Magnesium in the Stress Corrosion Cracking of an Al-Mg Alloy." Metallurgical and Materials Transactions. A, Physical Metallurgy and Materials Science 32A:1699-1711.
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