New technology at UMaine
from Science Briefs, January 25, 2008
The latest in combined scanning electron and focused ion beam microscopy instrumentation for use in nanofabrication and life sciences applications is now at the University of Maine.
The $1.7 million NVision 40 CrossBeam workstation, manufactured by Carl Zeiss SMT AG and SII NanoTechnology Inc., offers cutting-edge, 3D nanoscopic (molecular level with 1.2nm resolution) imaging, structuring and analysis. Its purchase was made possible by a 2004 R&D bond passed by Maine voters.
“This is a big step in the advancement of our capabilities,” says Scott Collins, a professor of chemistry who specializes in nanotechnology in UMaine’s Laboratory for Surface Science and Technology (LASST). “For high-end electron imaging and nanofabrication, this is the place to go in Maine.”
The microscopy workstation with its combined technologies, including a Focused Ion Beam (FIB) for nanoscale milling, EDAX elemental surface analysis, Raith electron/ion beam lithography, and gas injection system for nanoscale depositions/etching, offers a unique suite of technologies for nanoscience.
In addition, a cryogenic stage with Scanning Transmission Electron Micrsoscopy (STEM) provides the UMaine biologist unprecedented opportunities to image and reconstruct samples in 3D at nanometer resolution.
At UMaine, the advanced instrumentation is an important nanofabrication tool complementing LASST’s clean room facility. In addition to precision manufacturing, environmental sciences, and biotechnology also will benefit in the state-of-the-art technology through interdisciplinary research, education and industrial outreach projects.