Hitachi High Technologies America, Inc.

May 2, 2006
Tabletop Microscope Offers SEM Technology, Ease of Use

The new TM-1000 Tabletop Microscope from Hitachi High Technologies America, Inc. instrument gives a performance in excess of an ordinary optical microscope. Operation of the TM-1000 requires no special sample preparation for hydrated, oily or non-conducting samples and is as easy to use as a digital camera.

The TM-1000 utilizes scanning electron microscope (SEM) technology. It is easy to use while retaining powerful imaging capabilities. Surface morphology is shown in stereoscopic detail with images in contrast due to different average atomic number composition within the sample. This allows different phases in materials to be distinguished or heavy metal-labeled areas in a specimen to be located with ease. A built-in measurement function allows dimensional information to be acquired quickly and easily.

The new TM-1000 Tabletop Microscope produces high quality images and bridges the gap between optical and electron microscopy with 10x improvement in resolution and magnification as well as 100x improvement in depth of field compared with conventional optical microscopes, according to the company. It provides a real alternative to optical microscopes, stereo microscopes and confocal laser scanning microscopes.

The new unit has applications for many sectors including life sciences and pharmaceuticals. This compact instrument accepts samples up to 70 mm in diameter and 20 mm thickness. It is equipped with auto-focus, auto-brightness and auto-contrast functions and features a magnification range of 20 - 10,000x using standard imaging and up to 40,000x using digital zoom capabilities. All images are recorded digitally on a computer for easy access. The extensive functionality of this simple-to-use microscope enables even non-specialists to effortlessly obtain images of outstanding quality.