Assistant Professor Ashley Spear was recently awarded an internal research instrumentation fund (RIF) grant from the University of Utah Vice President for Research to help improve capabilities for materials imaging and characterization at the Utah Nanofab Facility. The grant provides $131K towards the purchase of a combined electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) and energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) system to be outfitted on the existing Helios dual-beam FIB at the Utah Nanofab Facility. The new augmentation would allow, for example, 3D mapping of grains, dislocations, twins, and chemical composition throughout volumes of polycrystalline materials. The proposal, entitled “Precision Microstructure Evaluation Supporting Advanced 3D Metals Manufacturing (EDS/EBSD on dbFIB)”, was endorsed by nine faculty members from four different departments within the College of Engineering, each of whom plans to utilize the new system for various research programs.

Utah_VPR“We appreciate working with the faculty to bring in new capabilities that everyone can use, and that keep our facilities competitive so that faculty research can be more impactful,” noted Dr. Ian Harvey, Associate Director of the Utah Nanofab.  “This addition will be an important element in our efforts to offer multi-scale, multi-dimension correlative microscopy on the same feature of interest.”

The new acquisition is planned to be installed and functional within the next year.