eTraining Introduction

Specimen Preparation

Leica Ultracut UCT



Hitachi S-4700 FE-SEM

Hitachi FB-2000A FIB


Veeco Dim 3000 AFM

Fluorescence Microscopes


Basic Imaging

Beam Settings

1. Low Magnification (< 10k x or X-ray microanalysis)    
 1.1. Working distance: 39 mm
 1.2. Condenser lens: 7-10
 1.3. Aperture setting: 1st or 2nd position
2. High Magnification (> 10k x)    
 2.1. Working distance: 8-15 mm
 2.2. Condenser lens: 10-14
 2.3. Aperture setting: 3rd or 4th position

Acquiring Images

dPict7 Toolbar

The software and icons refer to the dPict7 software. Click the toolbar above for a larger view.

1. There are two SEM screens from which you can view the image. The left screen shows a "real-time" image while the right is an FIS (frame integrated storage) image.    
2. Use the dSpec controller (joystick) to move around and find the sample area for imaging.    

3. Use the MAGNIFICATION and FOCUS knobs on the Main Control Panel to optimize your image.

It is best to focus at a magnification about x10 higher than the magnification necessary for your image and then decrease to the desired magnification.


4. Optimize the contrast and brightness of the image using the Brightness and Contrast knobs on the Main Control Panel.

If you are struggling with adjusting the brightness and contrast, Press the WFM button on the main control panel. Use the Brightness and Contrast control knobs to adjust the scan signal so that it falls within the lines that will appear on the left hand monitor.

  • The Contrast knob controls the height of the signal, while the Brightness knob controls the overall position of the signal. The highest peak of the scan signal should hit no more than the top line of the grid. The entire graph should lay in about the center of the 6 lines.
  • Press the WFM button again and the image will return to the left screen.
5. Create a folder in the C:\Users\ directory for your files.    
6. Open the dPict7 program (if not already open).    
7. In dPict7 select Acquire > Setup Beam Raster. VIEW
8. Use Image Folder > Browse to set the location for your files to be saved.    
9. Name your file.    
10. Choose an Image Title. Append Mag will add the magnification to the Image Title.    
11. Choose the image size you desire, such as 500, 1000, 2000, and so on, and fill in Number Pixels per Line. Note: the images are rectangular.    
12. You MUST insert the Magnification from the SEM or the micron (scale) bar will be wrong.    
13. Choose the acquisition mode.    

13.1. Fast Scan: (good for beam sensitive specimens but noisy)

Fast scan settings. IMS-1 Fast. Change the Tag to SEI or BEI. Sample per Pixel (40 is usually sufficient number), and Sampling Rate (400 Hz is the default).

13.2. Slow Scan: (best quality images)

Slow scan settings. IMS-1 Slow. Change the Tag to SEI or BEI. Dwell = 0.05 msec/pixel.

14. Use a File Type of 8-bit TIF. If you change this setting, please restore this setting when you are done.    
15. Put the SEM Scan Speed on Slow.    
16. Click Acquire to collect the image.    

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