Recent developments in nano- and semiconductor technology have substantially increased the demand for accurate and efficient site specific cross-sectioning of specimens and preparation of TEM samples. Moreover, nano-research is facing new challenges for manipulation, observation, and modification of devices on a submicron scale. At the same time in materials science a new focus on analytical nanoscale investigations—not only of specimen surfaces and cross sections—but on sample volumes is emerging.
These demanding requirements can be met if a focused ion beam (FIB) column for nanoscale structuring is combined with a high resolution SEM that is used to monitor the FIB milling and deposition process on a nanometer scale. Such an integrated Cross-Beam® system enables the high resolution observation and direct control of the FIB milling process in real time. Using this concept it is possible to prepare site specific TEM samples and cross sections with nano-scale accuracy. Such a system can be complemented with a gas injection system (GIS), for deposition and enhanced etching of specific materials, as well as, in-situ micro manipulation systems, and analytical detectors such as EDX and EBSP systems.