Irradiation of an amorphous layer of dried sodium phosphate buffer (pH = 7.0) by transmission electron microscopy (100–120 kV) causes rapid formation of numerous small spherical bubbles [10–100 Å (= 1–10 nm)] containing an unknown gas. Bubbling is detected even with the first low-dose exposure. In a thin layer (ca. 100–150 Å), bubbling typically goes through nucleation, growth, possible fusion, and end-state, after which further changes are not apparent; co-irradiated adjacent areas having a slightly smaller thickness never develop bubbles. In moderately thicker regions (ca. over 200 Å), there is no end-state. Instead, a complex sequence of microstructural changes is elicited during continued intermittent high-dose irradiation: nucleation, growth, early simple fusions, a second round of extensive multiple fusions, general reduction of matrix thickness (producing flattening and expansion of larger bubbles, occasional bubble fission, and formation of very large irregularly-shaped bubbles by a third round of compound fusion events), and slow shrinkage of all bubbles. The ongoing lighter appearance of bubble lumens, maintenance of their rounded shape, and extensive changes in size and form indicate that gas content continues throughout their surprisingly long lifetime; the thin dense boundary layer surrounding all bubbles is proposed to be the main mechanism for their long lifetime.