Cross-Correlative Double-Tilt Nano-Mechanical Testing Platform for The Transmission and Scanning Electron Microscopes

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-FG02-12ER90327
Agency Tracking Number: 98851
Amount: $150,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2012
Solicitation Topic Code: 14 a
Solicitation Number: DE-FOA-0000577
Small Business Information
8300 28th Ct NE, Unit 200, Lacey, WA, 98516-7126
DUNS: 171838019
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Daan Alsem
 (360) 252-2737
Business Contact
 Norman Salmon
Title: Mr.
Phone: (360) 252-2737
Research Institution
Understanding the microstructural origins of the mechanical behavior of materials has always been a core area of mechanical engineering and materials science. Renewed importance has been placed on mechanical behavior studies because the length scales of electronic and mechanical structures have decreased to nano-scale dimensions and are promising new generations of energy efficient nano-scale electrical and mechanical devices. Despite this importance, our understanding of the microstructural origins of mechanical behavior of relevant materials at these length scales lags behind the development of new device prototypes. Utilizing special electron microscope specimen stages and microelectrical mechanical systems (MEMS) will enable in-situ testing of the mechanical behavior of materials at nanometer length scales inside the scanning and transmission electron microscopes (SEM/TEM) and enable dynamic determination of the effects of materials processing on structure and mechanical behavior. This will provide critical insight into designing new nano-scale devices with improved properties and performance. We will specifically develop two in-situ electron microscopy specimen holders that will enable the use of MEMS devices to test mechanical behavior of nano-scale materials in both the scanning and transmission electron microscopes. Whereas the double-tilt TEM platform is aimed at specifically relating microstructure and measured mechanical behavior, the SEM platform is aimed to provide additional correlative information of the material surface changes as well as act as the platform for sample preparation, which is a crucial step in these experiments. In addition to this, the SEM holder is more suited to acquiring statistically relevant amounts of data, because of the higher through-put and the direct access to sample preparation tools in SEM/ dual beam focus ion beam (FIB) systems.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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