Microscopy Area

Electron Microscopy Unit

Lab resources

Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) allows to obtain high resolution images by high energy transmitted electrons from an ultrathin (<100nm)  and adequately contrasted sample.

TEM service is equipped with:

  • Transmission Electron Microscope Philips EM208S (FEI) with a tungsten filament as electron source and x200K maximum magnification;
  • image acquisition system MegaView III (Olympus Soft Imaging Solutions);
  • Ultramicrotome LEICA UC6 for sectioning of samples embedded in epoxy and acrylic resins.

Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FE-SEM) allows to obtain high resolution  three dimensional images from an adequately treated sample. A very high collimated electron beam interacts with a conductive sample scanning an area from which it induces the emission of secondary electrons.
These are collected to produce a such high focal depth image to permit detailed analysis of the morphological features of the region of interest.


SEM service is equipped with:

  • An high resolution field emission scanning electron microscope INSPECT F (FEI) with a resolving power of 1.2nm in SE and 2.5nm in BSE at 30kV. This allows us to examine in addition to the surface details of biological systems such as bacteria, parasites, cells and cell growth patterns, cell-pathogens interactions, tissues;
  • An high resolution field emission scanning electron microscope GeminiSEM 450 (ZEISS), with Beam Booster technology and a resolving power of 0.5 nm in SE at 15 kV, enabling high resolution imaging from 0.02 a 30 kV. SEM is equipped with: InLens SE and Energy selected Backscatter detectors; VPSE and nanoVP detectors; annular STEM detector; Array Tomography (ATLAS 5).
    The high Gemini technology allows high resolution analysis even of uncoated biological samples without charging effects.
    The system is equipped with software for Correlative Light and Electron Microscopy (CLEM) which couples the GeminiSEM 450 and the confocal microscope LSM980.
  • Instruments for the sample preparation: Critical Point Drying, Sputtering, Vacuum Evaporator.


The electron microscopy service is offered thanks to a shared management agreement between the FAST and the FARVA, MEGE and TISP centers. In all these structures there are in fact human resources and knowledge coming from the historical area of electron microscopy. The agreement safeguards a cultural heritage that has been present in the Institute for years, allows the advancement of the electron microscopy sector and facilitates the optimization of resources.