The PI 87 SEM PicoIndenter is a depth-sensing indenter that can be interfaced with a scanning electron microscope (SEM) or FIB/SEM. This system will perform quantitative nanomechanical testing while simultaneously imaging with the SEM. Furthermore, sample positioning with five degrees of freedom (X, Y, Z, rotation, and tilt) gives the user the freedom to align the sample with an ion beam for sample prep/modification or various detectors for advanced analysis.
This system is specifically designed for the SEM, with a vacuum-compatible transducer and an electrically conductive probe. With Hysitron's patented capacitive transducer technology, force is applied electrostatically and displacement is measured capacitively. This low-current design provides low thermal drift and industry-leading stability and sensitivity.
The advanced positioning capabilities of the PI 87 enable an unprecedented level of flexibility inside the SEM. Specifically, the tilt and rotation stages ensure that additional detectors (EBSD, EDS, etc.) are effortlessly within reach for advanced analysis before, during, or after the mechanical test. Though seamless pre- and post-test EBSD mapping, researchers can correlate the applied stress with changes in crystal orientation. Through a simple 90° tilt, the sample can also be aimed directly at the e-beam for top-down imaging. All this is accomplished without ever breaking vacuum and exposing the sample to atmosphere, which can be critical in avoiding the oxidation of certain materials. This enhanced flexibility also drastically reduces analysis time as compared to conventional means, saving valuable time on the microscope.