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Proximal Probes Facility

proximal probes

The Proximal Probes Facility consists of laboratories for microscopy, spectroscopy, and probing of nanostructured materials and their functional properties. At the core of the facility is a suite of instruments for in-situ microscopy of surfaces and nanostructures under extreme conditions, e.g., in reactive gases, and at high or low temperatures. Unique instruments enable in-situ and in-operando studies of surface chemistry and catalysis at pressures from ultrahigh vacuum (UHV) to 5 bar via complementary scanning tunneling microscopy imaging and photoelectron spectroscopy, coupled with real-time gas analysis. Several UHV systems are available for scanning tunneling and atomic force microscopy, as well as low-energy electron microscopy and synchrotron photoelectron microscopy. A UHV nanoprobe system allows electrical transport measurements on individual nanostructures.

All of these instruments provide extensive capabilities for sample preparation and modification, and for routine characterization by diffraction and electron or ion spectroscopy techniques.  In addition to complex UHV systems, powerful instruments are available for nanostructure characterization in air or controlled ambients, including fluids. Each of these systems enables multiple measurement techniques, including scanning probe, optical microscopy, Raman microscopy, and spectroscopy, hence serving a broad range of user needs.

Capabilities

  • Atomic-resolution, real-time, and spectroscopic surface microscopy of dynamic surface processes
  • Elevated-pressure and flow-reactor scanning probe microscopy on model catalysts
  • Low-temperature scanning tunneling microscopy, spectroscopy, single atom and molecule manipulation
  • In-situ transport measurements on single nanostructures ((e.g., nanowires)), in UHV and in reactive gases
  • Confocal optical and photocurrent microscopy at variable temperature and in high magnetic fields

Low-energy electron microscopy & photoelectron microscopy

Contact: Jerzy Sadowski

Elmitec LEEM V field-emission low-energy electron microscope for in-situ microscopy of dynamic surface processes. Micro-diffraction capability. Operation at variable temperature (200 K to over 1500 K), and at pressures from UHV to about 10-6 torr.

Probing of transport and photoelectric properties of single nanostructures

Contact: Peter Sutter

    Omicron Nanotechnology 4-Point Nanoprobe with Zeiss Gemini UHV field-emission scanning electron microscope, scanning Auger microscopy spectroscopy, integrated Orsay Physics UHV focused ion beam system, and low-energy electron diffraction.

    Attocube confocal microscope for operation in He exchange gas at variable temperature (4 K to 300 K) in magnetic fields up to 10 T.

    UHV and elevated pressure microscopy & spectroscopy

    Contact: Xiao Tong

    RHK Technology UHV 7500 variable temperature UHV atomic force and scanning tunneling microscope equipped for operation in UHV as well as in reactive gases at pressures up to ~10 torr; preparation chamber equipped with low-energy electron diffraction, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and ion scattering spectroscopy.

    Currently under construction: High-pressure photoelectron spectroscopy end station at the National Synchrotron Light Source, for XPS and UPS at pressures up to ~10 torr; UHV sample preparation and characterization in an attached preparation chamber.

Cryogenic scanning tunneling microscopy

Contact: Peter Sutter

Createc low-temperature UHV scanning tunneling microscope for operation with liquid helium (T ~ 5 K) or liquid nitrogen (T ~ 80 K) cooling; high-resolution microscopy, ultrastable tunneling spectroscopy, single atom and molecule manipulation. Sample preparation chamber equipped with liquid helium cooled manipulator and low-energy electron diffraction.

Scanning probe and optical microscopes for operation in air and controlled ambient

Contact: Xiao Tong

Veeco Multimode V scanning probe microscope for operation at variable temperature in air, controlled ambients, and fluids. Special cell for electrochemical scanning tunneling microscopy.

WiTec Alpha combination microscope for atomic force microscopy, scanning near-field optical microscopy, confocal microscopy, and confocal Raman microscopy within the same field of view. Two laser excitation sources (633 nm and 532 nm) for confocal and confocal Raman microscopy. Operation between room temperature and 200°C.