Nanomaterials Instrument Facility

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eMRI operates the Nanomaterials Instrumentation Facility, equipped with state-of-the-art instruments worth several M$, which has been established with policies for user fees, instrument time, external charges and maintenance. The facility supports 20 faculty, more than 100 postdocs and students, and 10 external companies.

Below are the principal facilities available on a fee-for-service or collaborative basis. For more information please use the contact information for the relevant instrument below, or contact Don Heiman.

  • Microscopy - SEM, TEM
  • Chemical Analysis - EDX, ICPMS
  • Optical spectroscopy capabilities including ultra-fast lasers
  • Thin film deposition (such as PLD and MBE)
  • Microwave measurement capabilities, from dc to mm-wave
  • Cryogenic measurement capabilities, from mK upwards
  • High-field superconducting magnets (14T)
  • Powder x-ray

Field-Emission SEM

Hitachi S4800 - The Institute has recently acquired a state-of-the-art field-emission SEM, Hitachi S4800, having a resolution of 1 nm. It is equipped with accessories, including, energy dispersive x-ray analysis (EDAX) for determining chemical composition, as well as a Nabity nanolithography e-beam pattern generation system. This instrument is an eMRI user facility.

Electron Microscopy

Electron Microscopy Center - Provides instruction and supports research activities involving imaging technologies, such as light microscopes, scanning and transmission electron microscopes, and computer image analysis equipment.

TEM - JEOL JEM-1000 general purpose transmission electron microscope.

SEM - AMRAY AMR-1000 scanning electron microscope is also used in a biology course on microscopy (BIO 3601, Biological Electron Microscopy).

Scanning Nanoprobes

Atomic Force, scanning-tunneling, and near-field optical microscopes (AFM, STM, NSOM) are available either as user facilities or collaborative operation.

AFM - Quesant Instruments Q-Scope 250 for room temperature operation. A Dektak-3 ST profilometer is also available as a user facility.

STM/AFM - RHK Model UHV 350, operating from 100-500 K in ultra-high vacuum.

Scanning Optical Nanoprobe

NSOM - Nanonics NSOM/SPM-100 near-field, scanning optical microscope with liquid helium temperature stage. CCD detectors for photoluminescence, fluorescence, reflectance, absorbance and Raman spectroscopies on the nanometer scale.

X-Ray Diffraction

A Philips X'pert PRO PW3040/60 general purpose x-ray diffractometer is operated by the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department. It can used for phase identification, structure analysis, and thin-film analysis via glancing incident angle.

SQUID Magnetometer

Quantum Design MPMS XL-5 SQUID magnetometer, with 5T maximum field, 10-8 emu relative sensitivity, AC susceptibility, vertical rotator, EverCool Dewar, and optical access.

Microfabrication Laboratory

3500 square feet of class 10/100/1000/support space. Complete facilities for MEMS fabrication, including lithography, etch, thin film, and plating capabilities for 3 and 6 inch substrates. 2000 square feet of cleanroom and ancillary space. A JEOL 6100 SEM is coupled with a Nabity Nanometer e-beam Pattern Generation System and a Kevex EDX diffractometer.

Analytical tools

Auger, RHEED, particle sizer, electrochemical workstation, Zeta potentiometer, magneto conductivity (T > 20mK, 9T), magneto-optics (9T, 14 T), MOKE, FTIR, Raman scattering, microwave apparatus, dielectometer. KLA-Tencor Laser surface scanner (200 nm resolution), two TSI CNC particle counters (10 nm resolution), goniometer, Nikon optical microscope system with auto-focus and an automated stage (1500x), four Megasonic and two ultrasonic cleaning stations, Headway Research Spinner, TSI particle classifier, bond tester, electrochemical work stations, particle size analyzer.

Magnetic Nanoparticles Platforms

The facility has extensive expertise and experience in the synthesis of several types of Magnetic Nanoparticles (MagNPs) and Nanoplatforms for these MagNPs. MagNPs can be synthesized in aqueous medium and non-aqueous hydrophobic medium in a variety of size ranges with precise control in particle size and size distribution. These MagNPs have been used as MRI contrast enhancement agents, drug delivery system and for energy delivery through magnetic hyperthermia. The synthesized MagNPs have also been encapsulated within a variety of nanoplatforms depending on the type of the MagNPs and desired application. Several magnetic nanoplatforms have been studied that have MagNPs encapsulated within liposomes, micelles or nanoemulsions. The facility can provide MagNPs and MagNPs-based nanoplatforms and tailor the properties of these materials for various research projects. These are available a part of a collaborative research project.

Advanced Scientific Computation Center

ASCC supports a state-of-the-art Itanium-2 cluster and a separate Compaq Alpha cluster for high-end scientific research computing and education purposes. The Center was founded by external funding from NSF, Compaq Corporation and Hewlett-Packard.