Cipher: Revealing the Distribution of Lithium in Scanning Electron Microscopes

Cipher® is the first and only device that provides a quantitative visualization of lithium distribution in dual beam and scanning electron microscopes. Utilizing the innovative lithium by composition by difference method (Li-CDM), Cipher assesses the lithium content in metallic alloys, compounds, and intricate metal oxides to single-digit weight percentages, fast-tracking the advancement of renewable energy materials and aerospace alloys.


  • Reveals the distribution of lithium at the microscale in a wide range of materials, which was previously unknown.
  • Ascertains the charge state of oxide particles, such as lithium nickel manganese cobalt oxide (NMC) and lithium iron phosphate (LFP), that are utilized as cathodes in lithium-ion batteries.
  • Delivers quantitative analysis of lithium with a greater than tenfold improvement in the minimum detection limit.
Determining Lithium Content by the Composition by Difference Method

Determining Lithium Content by the Composition by Difference Method. Lithium (Li)-ion batteries have been adopted for a wide range of energy storage applications due to their outstanding energy density and low mass compared to other technologies. However, there remains considerable scope for energy capacity and efficiency improvements by optimizing devices and materials used in their construction. In particular, microstructural and compositional analysis has proven challenging at the micro- and nano-scales with structure evolution and degradation mechanisms due to a lack of understanding at these length scales. Video Credit: Gatan Inc.

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