Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) is an analytical method used in a wide range of applications. Scientists use it to learn more about microscopic organisms or crystalline structures. SEM is also used in industrial processes to examine the surface compositions of components and products. Applications range from the semiconductor industry, food monitoring, medical devices and microelectronics to general production monitoring.

Application requirements

  • Low vibration
  • High reliability
  • Low power consumption

How does it work?
In this type of electron microscope, the electron beam scans the sample in a raster pattern. Initially electrons are generated at the top of the column by the electron source. These are emitted when their thermal energy overcomes the work function of the source material. They are then accelerated and attracted by the positively-charged anode. The entire electron column must be under vacuum. Like all the components of an electron microscope, the electron source is sealed inside a special chamber in order to preserve vacuum and protect it against contamination, vibrations or noise. Although the vacuum protects the electron source from being contaminated, it also allows the user to acquire a high-resolution image. In the absence of vacuum, other atoms and molecules can be present in the column. Their interaction with electrons causes the electron beam to deflect and reduces the image quality. Furthermore, high vacuum increases the collection efficiency of electrons by the detectors that are in the column.

Product portfolio
Due to the low vibration level required, the HiPace Plus line is the best solution for electron microscopes. The vibration level of the HiPace Plus is significantly lower than that of standard turbopumps. Pfeiffer Vacuum can also offer you a specially developed vibration isolator to reduce the vibration level even further. Since a backing pump is required, Pfeiffer Vacuum offers various dry solutions, including dry membrane pumps, multi-stage Roots pumps or even our newly developed scroll pumps. A variety of gauges can also be installed in order to provide you with a customized vacuum solution.

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