The Advanced Microscopy Facility

Welcome to the Advanced Microscopy Facility (AMF), an open user facility located in the Bob Wright Centre at the University of Victoria in beautiful British Columbia.

Silicon solar cell

Silicon solar cell: Top view and FIB section of an ordered structured amorphous Silicon solar cell, made by nanosphere lithography and PECVD. Manufacture, SEM imaging, and FIB section by Milton Wang of the Brolo lab.


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STEHM update

Last updated: 07:35 PM, Thursday, April 24th, 2014

The STEHM is ready in its high-resolution imaging and diffraction mode at 300 kV, 200 kV and 60 kV. The 300 kV works with thick specimens and produces the highest spatial resolution imaging. The 60 kV mode is good for beam sensitive specimens and provides more contrast, while achieving sub-Angstrom spatial resolution.

Training for use of the STEHM will be on an individual basis, first come, first served. Please contact our laboratory manager Dr. Elaine Humphrey, and fill out the training application form.

With regards to preparing your specimens, please see Dr. Elaine Humphrey, Adam Schuetze or Dr. Rodney Herring for help before beginning your preparation. TEM substrates for your specimens such as Silicon Nitride and holey Carbon are available to purchase from the laboratory for this purpose. Please do not use Formvar coated grids, they will not be allowed into the STEHM. We also have many types of specimen preparation solutions especially required for biological and beam-sensitive specimens.

The Hitachi FB-2100 FIB and Fischione 1010 Ion Mill are available for fabricating your specimens. A Fishione 1020 Plasma Cleaner and two Hitachi Zone (UV/OZone) cleaners are available for cleaning your specimens. A Gatan Cryoplunge 3 flash freezer is available to fix liquids in an amorphous state in specimens containing water or other forms of liquids. A Gatan cryo holder allows you to view hydrated specimens or specimens which suffer from contamination.

The specimen holders available include a single tilt holder, double tilt holder, heating holder (up to 1500 C), cryo LN2 holder, and 360 degree tomography holder.

For analytical electron microscopy, i.e., determining compositions and the state of atoms and ions in materials, the Gatan electron energy loss spectrometer (EELS) and Gatan Imaging Filter (GIF) is available. There is also a Bruker energy dispersive spectrometer (EDS) for elemental analysis using X-ray signals. At present there is one biprism for holography, with plans for up to four in the works.

Critical Information

Please review these items before booking your instrument or planning your project.

  • Starting today, FIB & SEM users who have not booked sessions for more than 24 weeks will be evaluated for retraining on their next booking.
    Posted 1 month ago
  • The login page has been changed. It now requires you to read the critical news feed before logging in.
    Posted 2 months ago
  • The door codes have been changed. You must now sign out a hard key for after-hours access, which must be returned after work is completed.
    Posted 3 months ago
  • Hitachi S-4800 SEM users will no longer pay an additional fee to use EDS, as of April 1st. See
    Posted 3 months ago
  • Hitachi S-4800 SEM user fees have increased for inside and academic users as of April 1st. See
    Posted 3 months ago
  • Want to book sessions past 4:45 PM? Contact Adam about becoming approved for after hours access.
    Posted 6 months ago
  • Want to get trained on the STEHM? Fill out the application form, and we'll notify you when the next session will be.
    Posted 9 months ago

Workshop News

See below for the next available workshop and workshop related news.

  • The FIB workshop client for early June has withdrawn for now, so the schedule has been cleared.
    Posted 2 months ago
  • The next SEM workshop has been moved from May 21/22 to June 10/11, 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM.
    Posted 2 months ago
  • Training videos on inserting and removing specimens with Hitachi S-4800 SEM have been posted.
    Posted 8 months ago
  • The fee structure has been posted for SEM EDX training.
    Posted 8 months ago
  • Want to get trained on the STEHM? Fill out the application form, and we'll notify you when the next session will be.
    Posted 9 months ago

In The News

When the AMF is featured in the news, you will find it here.

Full Feed

This is the complete feed of every posted item. Click on the icons below for archive of older items.

  • Adam will be on vacation on July 30th and 31st.
    Posted 5 hours ago
  • Elaine will be away at the M&M conference starting August 1st, returning on August 11th.
    Posted 8 hours ago
  • Adam will be away from 9 AM to 12 PM on Tuesday July 29th.
    Posted yesterday
  • The Hitachi S-4800 SEM will be baking out over the August long weekend, and unavailable from 4 PM August 1st to 12 PM August 5th.
    Posted 5 days ago
  • To simplify email sorting, I have added [AMF] prefix to all system messages.
    Posted 12 days ago