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Factory Automation and Production Systems Institute Installs Ion Beam-Scanning Electron Microscope

TESCAN ORSAY HOLDING a.s. has announced the installation of the AMBER X focused ion beam-scanning electron microscope (FIB-SEM) at the Institute for Factory Automation and Production Systems (FAPS) in Germany. The AMBER X offers a unique combination of plasma FIB with ultra-high resolution (UHR) field emission SEM for multiscale materials characterization. FAPS is using the FIB-SEM for research that will help to improve products used in a wide variety of industries, including automotive, printed electronics, battery and additive manufacturing, renewable energy and medical technology.

“When we purchased our FIB-SEM, we were looking for a robust instrument with a high level of flexibility so that we could use it for characterization on a wide range of materials,” said Martin Muckelbauer, Research Engineer at FAPS. “We have research coming in mostly from industry that involve large sample areas, but we also need to capture tiny, precise details with high resolution and magnification. Hence, the sample versatility and UHR imaging capabilities of the AMBER X, together with high throughput, was very important to us.”

FAPS is studying silver printing technology to improve the reliability of electronic components used in a diverse range of consumer products. They are using the AMBER X for three-dimensional (3D) failure analysis and characterization to look at delamination, cracking, hotspots and porosity.

Research involving copper coating technology focuses on improving electrical conductivity in order to eliminate oxides and pores from structures. This work will help to improve inverter and battery technology and additive manufacturing. The AMBER X is ideal for this application due to its high-throughput capabilities for cutting through layers of material and ability to provide high-resolution details of the sample surface and melted particles.

According to Martin Sláma, TESCAN’s Product Marketing Manager for FIB-SEM 3D characterization and TEM lamella preparation in materials science, “FAPS is helping to improve the world by pushing the boundaries in electronics research. They were looking for a versatile instrument that can support a wide range of materials for their busy lab. The AMBER X met their needs for flexibility, robustness, and capability to analyze large areas easily.”

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