Equipment, AAP 2017

Team : Electron Microscopic

Project leader : Bruno Bresson

Abstract :

The acquisition of an environmental electron microscope complements an existing very high resolution electron microscope at ESPCI. It opens a field of exploration of fragile materials that was missing in the Paris Centre area. The two microscopes are installed at the Pierre Gilles de Gennes Institute in a suitable environment (magnetic field and low vibrations, air-conditioned) and are currently operating as a microscopy platform open to the entire Respore network. In particular, the partner teams (SIMM, Collège de France, IMAP and IFSTAR etc.) regularly use it. Since the installation, experiments previously impossible with existing instruments have been carried out and have made it possible to take important scientific steps: it was possible to observe for the first time in situ swelling of thermo-stimulable hydrogels thanks to the control of temperature and humidity within the chamber. This environmental microscope also allows for routine observation of fragile polymeric materials without metallization thanks to low vacuum mode. This material has been widely shared by different teams for a year now, we have been able to create a platform and a beneficial environment that goes beyond the strict framework of Respore, since this platform was also able to open up to the entire ESPCI and IPGG by keeping, of course, priority access to Respore members. We were able to attract several users around this project and we are working to complete this platform using digital optical microscopy and we think to fluidify the use by offering users the most suitable technique. This project is unquestionably a collective success.

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