Technical Summary: Science and technology in the 21st century will rely heavily on the development of new materials with properties that can be tailored according to performance requirements. The development of smart materials will undoubtedly contribute to a revolution in many fields of science and technology such as information science, microelectronics, computer science, medical analysis, life sciences, energy, transportation, safety engineering and military technologies. A key piece of infrastructure for nanotechnology and materials science is a first class imaging and analysis facility, which is capable of providing sub-Angstrom resolution imaging and atom-column localized chemical information. The objective of this proposal is to acquire a state-of-the-art 300 keV field emission transmission/scanning electron microscope (TEM/STEM) with a 0.19 nm point-to-point image resolution and 0.2 nm diameter high-brightness nanoprobe, a high stability specimen stage (<1 Ã… drift/min-1), a high collection efficiency solid state x-ray detector(s), beam scanning capabilities (for x-ray mapping), and a sub-eV energy resolution electron energy-loss spectrometer. The TEM/STEM is designed to meet the needs of a large research community of more than 500 per year in nanotechnology and materials science at the Georgia Institute of Technology. The most powerful application of an advanced TEM is its super-high resolution for imaging the atomic structure of materials at a resolution of ~0.1-0.2 nm. Combined with electron diffraction, TEM is unique in determining the defect, interface and domain structures of materials. Complimenting this powerful imaging capability, X-ray energy-dispersive spectrometry (EDS) and electron energy-loss spectroscopy (EELS) by far the most rapid and convenient method for measuring the composition of a specimen in the TEM at a spatial resolution approximately the size of the electron probe. By using a high-coherence, high-brightness electron probe, a spatial resolution of ~0.2 nm can be achieved for thin samples. EDS represents the most powerful technique for quantifying the composition of elements as light as nitrogen.
Layman Summary: The development of smart materials continues to be a revolution in many fields of science and technology such as information science, microelectronics, computer science, medical analysis, life sciences, energy, transportation, safety engineering and military technologies. Materials development in the future, therefore, should be directed toward creation of hyperfunctional materials which may surpass even biological organs in some aspects. A key challenge is to correlate the material's structure with its properties in order to fully control structural and compositional evolution for achieving superior performance. Electron microscopy and associated analysis techniques have proven to be one of the most powerful techniques for exploring the nanoscopic world associated with a variety of materials and devices. The proposed HRTEM will represent strategic equipment for all of the nano- and bio-research programs at Georgia Tech. This will impact numerous programs distributed over 10 units, campus-wide, including but not limited to: advanced catalysis, photovoltaic materials, energy storage and generation, biosensing, bioimaging, drug delivery, composite materials, electronic packaging and interconnects. The proposed TEM will produce over 500 research articles per year. It will also impact local industry in the Atlanta area. It will make huge contribution to the education and training of undergraduate students, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.