Electron Microscopy of Individual Atoms

  • M. Isaacson
  • M. Ohtsuki
  • M. Utlaut


Thirty years ago in a classic paper, Otto Scherzer calculated the contrast expected from a single atom in an electron microscope and concluded that with the resolution about 2A, individual heavy atoms should be visible if they were supported on very thin, low atomic number substrates, [SCHERZER, (1949)]. Since that time, the attempt to visualize individual atoms has been one of the main themes of modern electron microscopy. The goal was ellusive until this decade when the use of dark field techniques enabled such visualization to be achieved in a number of different instruments, albeit not necessarily on a routine basis. [For example, see CREWE, et al. (1970); HENKELMAN and OTTENSMEYER, (1971); HASHIMOTO, et al. (1971); THON and WILLASCH, (1972); WALL, et al. (1974); RETSKY, (1974); DORIGNAC and JOUFFREY, (1976); COLE, et al. (1977). For a more comprehensive list of attempts at the visualization of individual atoms (prior to 1977) the reader is referred to the review by LANGHORE, (1978)].


Heavy Atom Individual Atom Spherical Aberration Probe Size Chromatic Aberration 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Isaacson
    • 1
    • 2
  • M. Ohtsuki
    • 2
  • M. Utlaut
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PhysicsUniversity of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  2. 2.The Enrico Fermi InstituteUniversity of ChicagoChicagoUSA

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