Techniques Available


Energy-Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy


Mineral Liberation Analysis


Electron Backscatter Diffraction

The Scanning Electron Microscopy Lab contains two SEMs: the FEI Quanta 400(1), for serving general applications in biology, chemistry, mineralogy, and physics, and the FEI MLA 650FEG(2), capable of serving applications which require higher resolution imaging. General purpose SEM offers secondary electron (SE) and backscatter electron (BSE) imaging, providing topographical and compositional contrast images, respectively.

For accommodating the variety of information available from electron interaction, our SEMs are also equipped with high throughput Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) detectors from Bruker. Both SEMs are also capable of x-ray aided image analysis, i.e., Mineral Liberation Analysis® (MLA). The MLA software automates image acquisition, stage movement and x-ray acquisition for spatially quantifying mineral abundances. The MLA 650FEG is also equipped with an electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) system from Oxford/HKL.

Additionally, both SEMs are capable of environmental SEM (ESEM), which refers to the SEMs capability of working at variable pressures or near atmospheric pressures instead of limited to high vacuum. ESEM also allows for almost any specimen to be examined, including wet and non-conducting specimens.

Funding for the acquisition of the equipment in this laboratory was provided by:

  1. Dr. Paul Syylvester through Vale Inco and ACOA AIF program
  2. Dr. Paul Sylvester through RDC (NL) program and a generous donation from IOC