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nano nano
August 28, 2011 7:21 PM   Subscribe

The FEI winner (Electron Microscopy) is 'Microcanyon - microcrack after bending test'. The other images are just as amazing.
posted by unliteral (10 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite

 
This might be a useful link for those of us who don't know what FEI winner means.
posted by nonreflectiveobject at 7:26 PM on August 28, 2011


Woah
posted by zeoslap at 8:45 PM on August 28, 2011


Tasty. Thanks for sharing.
posted by halfbuckaroo at 8:50 PM on August 28, 2011


Oh great! Now I'm going to be up all night googling "erythrocytes" and "ion beam milling", thanks a lot! Sheesh!
posted by calamari kid at 9:03 PM on August 28, 2011


Very cool image. Keep in mind the coloring is added after the fact to make it pretty. Electrons don't "see" in color.

Electron micrographs get their image contrast through surface morphology and z contrast (atomic density). Basically,electrons are accelerated to a high energy, focused down to small spot by magnetic lenses and then scanned over the sample. The electrons that are ejected (secondary) or bounced(backscatter) back are detected by different one of a couple different types of sensors based on what type of image you're looking for.

Backscatter images are really useful for looking at materials with different densities. Really dense objects will be much brighter as the electrons will have more stuff to run into and be more likely to turn back around and hit the detector.

Secondary electrons, that is electrons that are ejected from the sample itself, are great for looking at surface morphology.

A cool comparison of the different imaging types can be found in the same wikipedia article here.

/nerd off.
posted by Quack at 11:39 PM on August 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


Also, Ion beam milling is just that. Running a highly accelerated beam of ionized(has an electron removed) atoms(generally gallium) is a great way to sputter away material. Gallium is great because it's a solid at room temperature but by heating it just a couple of degrees you can make it change to liquid phase form and it will whet into a nice source.
posted by Quack at 11:47 PM on August 28, 2011


Sad there's no sample prep details.
posted by a robot made out of meat at 3:57 AM on August 29, 2011


Also, Ion beam milling is just that. Running a highly accelerated beam of ionized(has an electron removed) atoms(generally gallium) is a great way to sputter away material. Gallium is great because it's a solid at room temperature but by heating it just a couple of degrees you can make it change to liquid phase form and it will whet into a nice source.

IIRC, this is how some telescope mirrors are now ground.
posted by indubitable at 6:25 AM on August 29, 2011


I could have done without the heavy handed false coloration on the microcanyon image. I can imagine it as the grand canyon without the generic photoshop filter clouds in the background, thank you very much.
posted by cirrostratus at 9:05 AM on August 29, 2011


The 3rd place picture looks like one of the Martians from War Of The Worlds.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 11:55 AM on August 29, 2011


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