sciTEM - sample preparation for electron microscopy

The sciTEM is an ultra-low volume liquid handling system specifically configured for dispensing multiple liquid samples onto TEM grids. Its high precision drive system allows for the placement of distinct samples as close as 100 µm to each other.

The non-contact piezo dispensing technology enables liquid volumes of about 100 pL to be deposited onto fragile surfaces without damage to the sensitive grids. Sophisticated image analysis technology is used to identify TEM grid placement in the holder, and to detect deposition location in either structured or non-structured grids.

This system is particularly well suited to enable high-throughput characterization of nanoparticles. Indeed, traditional analytical methods place a single sample per grid, resulting in a distinct grid loading / unloading cycle for each analysis. With sciTEM, one can place several distinct samples onto a single grid. This results in a number of analysis possible for each instrument grid loading / unloading cycle. Such an increase in analysis throughput capabilities will certainly enable experimentation that was previously impossible, or too costly to implement.

As of August 2017, those working with nanomaterials now have an integrated approach to the imaging and analysis process thanks to a new partnership between nanomaterial software company, FullScaleNANO, and SCIENION.


Technical information sciTEM



Piezo dispensing Non-contact, drop-on-demand
No. of channels 1 (up to 2)
Distance of dispence capillaries 4.5 or 9 mm increments
Dispensing volume 50 - 800 pL per drop
Capillary orifice 50 - 100 µm
Capillary material Borosilicate glass
Typical spot size 80 - 250 µm, depending on surface
Typical pitch (spacing) 100 µm (scalable)
Dispense control Integrated horizontal CCD camera
Capacity 1 source plate (MTP)
  1 target 'sticky' holder for up to 200 TEM grids (120 x 85 mm)
Dimensions (L, W, H) with enclosure 720 x 960 x 680 mm
Weight 120 kg
Voltage VAC 110 or 220