Project Details


0959905BatsonRutgers U. New BrunswickMRI-R2: Development of an Integrated STEM Instrument with Nanoscale milli-Electron Volt Energy Loss Spectroscopy Technical Summary: This award is funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-5). Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy (EELS) in the Scanning Transmission Electron Microscope (STEM) is a bedrock quantitative analytical technique for modern materials development. This partnership between Rutgers University and Nion, Co., a small US business, will use aberration correction methods to develop the first Angstrom-level EELS instrument capable of 10 meV energy resolution. Using incident electron energies of 60-100 keV, studies of electronic, photonic and vibronic behavior of soft and hard sub-nanoscale materials will be possible. The instrument will include probe side chromatic aberration correction, an innovative method for monochromator-spectrometer energy registry, pre-spectrometer aberration correction, and a 2D single electron counting detector optimized for high sensitivity and high dynamic range. Accessible problems include: phonon and atomic/molecular vibrational behavior in nanoscale objects, electronic behavior of interfacial defects, energetics of configuration changes in carbon-based molecules, and mapping of nanoscale photonic and plasmonic fields. The instrument will be a superb tool for understanding structure-function relationships in numerous materials of importance to societal applications such as photovoltaics, energy storage, catalysis, high temperature hard coatings, nanoelectronics, photonics, and emergent behavior based on nanoscale processes. The world-leading combination of spatial and energy resolution will be valuable for motivating and training of students by communicating atomic level functionality in very graphic and visual ways. Rutgers diverse student body and its extensive outreach community will both benefit from this capability. This user facility, accessible to a broad portion of the scientific community, will be the first state-of-the-art aberration corrected EELS/STEM facility in New Jersey, providing direct access for both local educational and industrial users. Non-Technical Summary: This award is funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-5). New materials, particularly those developed on the nanoscale, provide critical advances required to meet many of the demanding societal problems confronting the next generations. The design of such materials requires visualization of atomic level structure, composition, and bonding at the finest level-atom by atom. For the past 50 years, electron microscopy, combined with electron energy loss spectroscopy, has been a workhorse, providing structure as well as atomic composition on the nanoscale and information on atomic bonding. Nevertheless, the most recent demands of nano-scale materials science require still more precise and sensitive tools. This partnership between Rutgers University and Nion Co., a small US business, will produce a leap ahead in electron spectroscopy capabilities to allow visualization of the function of structures which contain only a few atoms -- even down to single molecules, a region unattainable till now. The new tool aid the creation of new materials required for efficient energy production and storage, catalysis, nanoelectronics, photonics, and new materials yet to be created. The highly visual information will also play a significant role in motivating students, and preparing the future generation of advanced materials scientists and engineers. The instrument will be located at Rutgers University in the Laboratory for Surface Modification and will be administered by the Institute for Advanced Materials, Devices and Nanotechnology. This facility will be a world leader, bringing to the New Jersey region a new resource for the advancement of scientific understanding, for educational outreach, industrial interaction, and collaboration with other national and international scientific institutions.
Effective start/end date4/15/103/31/13


  • National Science Foundation (National Science Foundation (NSF))


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