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2014 MRS Spring Meeting


X.02 - Fulfilling Feynman's Dream: 'Make the Electron Microscope 100 Times Better' - Are We There Yet?


Apr 23, 2014 12:00pm ‐ Apr 23, 2014 12:45pm

Description

In Feynman’s famous 1959 lecture, “There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom,” he challenged us to improve the electron microscope 100 times so we could “just look at the thing.” Are we there yet? With the spectacular advances in aberration correction of the last decade, we have improved image resolution to well below 1 Å and gained sensitivity to light atoms in both imaging and spectroscopy. But today’s microscope is only 20 times better than in Feynman’s time – and so we remain far from fulfilling his dream. We cannot just look at point defects and determine their three-dimensional configuration, or their diffusion pathways. Our lateral resolution still far exceeds the fundamental limit set by thermal vibrations, and our depth resolution remains in the nanometer range. In this talk, I will show examples where further improvements in resolution would indeed enable us to “just look at the thing.”

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