The Duncan Calder Materials Characterisation Lab; Transmission Electron Microscopy to support research in the the School of Engineering and Technology

Project: Other

Project Details


Current research within the School of Engineering and Technology involves metal-ceramic joining, the development of functional nanoparticles and processing using pulses of high-density electrical and magnetic fields. The progress of this research relies on characterisation using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) in which an electron beam is transmitted through ultra-thin specimens. Interaction between the transmitted electrons and the sample forms an image for observation. TEM can create images of very high resolution and enables scientists to examine samples to extremely fine detail. In addition to imaging, TEM can perform analysis for chemical identification, crystal structure and orientation, electronic structure and sample induced electron phase shift. TEM is a major analytical technique in not only Materials Science/Engineering, but also in the Medical and Biological fields. This type of equipment will enhance the School's capability in delivering research of high quality and will lead to publications in high-impact factor journals.

One of the projects that will be supported concerns the development of nanoparticles with anti-bacterial, anti-microbial and anti-viral capability for use in air and water filters. The research involves the chemical and surface modification of these nanoparticles so they can be incorporated into these filters. Owing to their ultra-small size, TEM is a major technique that can be used in studying the desired chemical and surface modifications. The benefit of this research is that it will potentially extend the capability of current filters by destroying viruses and make filters more cost-effective and reduce their maintenance demands.

Another project that will benefit from the use of TEM concerns research on the development of processing techniques using high-density electrical and magnetic fields. The benefit of such a technique is that it can potentially replace lengthy materials treatments with an energy-efficient process that takes only a few seconds. The Materials and Structures group at UH has demonstrated the benefits of such electromagnetic-based techniques, but their application will not materialise until the mechanism of their effect is understood. The research has shown that some of the operating mechanisms involve changes to the defect structure which can be studied through the use of superior techniques including TEM.
Effective start/end date1/06/17 → …


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