Materials Characterization of the microstructure of materials is critical in a variety of areas such as failure analysis, development of new materials, process optimization and new process development. Microstructure is hierarchical and different sets of tools are used to characterize microstructure at different length scales. Ecomatech uses a very wide array of tools to characterize the microstructure and phase composition of materials. Ecomatech has ready access to a state-of-the-art SEM/EDS system and access to a wide range of other analysis tools through professional networks developed over the years with universities and third-party vendors. Knowledge of the tools available and which ones are applicable to the job at hand, mean efficient materials characterization with little wasted time, money, and effort.
Ecomatech, over the years, has developed a broad network of university and other industrial firms and can access a wide range of materials characterization equipment and techniques. A few examples:
24 / 7 access to a state-of-the-art Tescan Vega 4 SEM with the following features:
- Integrated EDS system capable of handling high count rates with low dead times. X-ray spectra and maps can be acquired in a matter of minutes.
- A built-in plasma cleaner to remove carbon contamination which can result in erroneous x-ray spectra.
- A special secondary detector designed to operate in low vacuum mode to image non-conductive and highly charging samples such as polymers and grease.
- Remote access to the SEM for the customer to directly observe operation of the SEM and suggest areas for further detailed examination.
Materials Characterization Tools – Other Resources
- Transmission Electron Microscopy
- High resolution X-ray Computed Tomography (CT)
- X-ray Diffraction
- Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA) for high accuracy and ability measure larger quantities of sample for a more representative analysis compared to Inductively Coupled Plasma (ICP) and DC Arc techniques
- Resonant Ultrasound Spectroscopy (RUS)
- Scanning Acoustic Microscopy (SAM)
- SQUID (Superconducting Quantum Interference Device) for accurate measurement of magnetic properties of very small samples
- Field Emission – Focused Ion Beam (FE-FIB) microscopes
- Electron Backscattered Diffraction (EBSD) for Grain Size and Orientation Distribution