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Ultramicroscopy. 2019 Aug 26;207:112829. doi: 10.1016/j.ultramic.2019.112829. [Epub ahead of print]

Tunable electron beam pulser for picoseconds stroboscopic microscopy in transmission electron microscopes.

Author information

1
Euclid Techlabs, LLC, 365 Remington Blvd, Bolingbrook, USA. Electronic address: c.jing@euclidtechlabs.com.
2
Department of Condensed Matter Physics and Materials Science, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, NY 11973, USA. Electronic address: zhu@bnl.gov.
3
Euclid Techlabs, LLC, 365 Remington Blvd, Bolingbrook, USA.
4
Materials Science and Engineering Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD 20899, USA.
5
Department of Condensed Matter Physics and Materials Science, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, NY 11973, USA.
6
Materials Science and Engineering Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD 20899, USA. Electronic address: june.lau@nist.gov.

Abstract

For two decades, time-resolved transmission electron microscopes (TEM) have relied on pulsed-laser photoemission to generate electron bunches to explore sub-microsecond to sub-picosecond dynamics. Despite the vast successes of photoemission time-resolved TEMs, laser-based systems are inherently complex, thus tend not to be turn-key. In this paper, we report on the successful retrofit of a commercial 200 keV TEM, without an external laser, capable of producing continuously tunable pulsed electron beams with repetition rates from 0.1 GHz up to 12 GHz and a tunable bunch length from tens of nanoseconds down to 10 ps. This innovation enables temporal access into previously inaccessible regimes: i.e., high repetition rate stroboscopic experiments. Combination of a pair of RF-driven traveling wave stripline elements, quadrupole magnets, and a variable beam aperture enables operation of the instrument in (1) continuous waveform (CW) mode as though the instrument was never modified (i.e. convention TEM operation mode, where the electrons from the emission cathode randomly arrive at the sample without resolvable time information), (2) stroboscopic (pump-probe) mode, and (3) pulsed beam mode for dose rate sensitive materials. To assess the effect of a pulsed beam on image quality, we examined Au nanoparticles using bright field, high-resolution TEM imaging and selected area diffraction in both continuous and pulsed-beam mode. In comparison of conventional TEMs, the add-on beam pulser enables the observation of ultrafast dynamic behavior in materials that are reversible under synchronized excitation.

KEYWORDS:

Pulser; Stroboscopic; TEM; UEM; Ultrafast

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