Equipment | Microscopes |Ion Beam Microscopes

Ion Beam Microscopes

Helium Ion Beam microscopes (HIBM) operate using a similar principle to scanning electron microscopes (SEM). However, as the name suggests, they use a beam of helium ions rather then electrons to image the samples. Helium ion beam microscopes have the advantage that they are able to produce sharper images on a wider range of materials with increased contrast. Most importantly, they have a much improved level of resolution due to their shorter wavelength. They also cause less damage to samples than other ion beams, due to the lower mass of the helium ions compared to the liquid metals which are also commonly used. Images obtained with a HIBM are able to provide topgraphic, material, crystallographic and electrical information.