Progress in Aberration-Corrected High-Resolution Transmission Electron Microscopy Using Hardware Aberration Correctiones
by Markus Lentzen
The design and construction of a double-hexapole aberration corrector has made it possible to build the prototype of a spherical-aberration corrected transmission electron microscope dedicated to highresolution imaging on the atomic scale.
The corrected instrument, a Philips CM200 FEG ST, has an information limit of better than 0.13 nm, and the spherical aberration can be varied within wide limits, even to negative values.
The aberration measurement and the corrector control provide instrument alignments stable enough for materials science investigations. Analysis of the contrast transfer with the possibility of tunable spherical aberration has revealed new imaging modes: high-resolution amplitude contrast, extension of the point resolution to the information limit, and enhanced image intensity modulation for negative phase contrast. In particular, through the combination of small negative spherical aberration and small overfocus, the latter mode provides the high-resolution imaging of weakly scattering atom columns, such as oxygen, in the vicinity of strongly scattering atom columns.
This article reviews further lens aberration theory, the principle of aberration correction through multipole lenses, aspects for practical work, and materials science applications.
Further reading: Microscopy and Microanalysis 12 (2006) 191-205.