Home / Equipment / Nion UltraSTEM 100


Katia March
Associate Research Scientist

Dan Thompson
Contact for Industry, Tech Marketing and Sales Coordinator

Nion UltraSTEM 100

The Nion UltraSTEM 100 is an aberration corrected STEM that offers sub-angstrom resolution at both 100 keV and 60 keV. The Nion can also run at 40KeV with near 1Å resolution. A special monochromater newly developed for ASU offers ultra-fast ELLS spectra at energy resolution better than 20 meV (0.02 eV).  The instrument is part of ASU's Southwestern Center for Aberration Corrected Electron Microscopy. 

The instrument's flexible column provides < 1 Å resolution imaging as well as rapid nanoanalysis with an atom-sized electron probe containing >0.5 nA of current, and efficient coupling into a variety of detectors. It can also produce high-quality diffraction patterns and even CTEM images.

The UltraSTEM has produced atomic-resolution elemental maps in less than a minute and has also produced unsurpassed images of graphene and similar light-Z materials, while operating at 60 keV, below the knock-on threshold for C and other light atoms.

The principal design elements of the UltraSTEM that have made this advance possible are:

  • high-brightness cold field emission electron gun (CFEG)
  • high-performance 3rd generation C3/C5 aberration corrector
  • ultra-stable sample stage using detachable sample cartridges
  • optimized EELS coupling optics
  • UHV construction
  • complete remote operability, including sample exchange

Here's a link to an informative poster on the EELS capability of the Nion


  • operating energies: typically set up for 100 keV and 60 keV
  • gun brightness: >1x109 A/(cm2 sr) at 100 keV
  • gun vacuum: <5x10-11 torr
  • sample vacuum: typically in 10-9 torr range
  • number of sample cartridges supplied: 3 fixed, 3 tilting
  • tilt range of tilting cartridge: ± 25° (on 2 axes)
  • objective lens (OL) aberration coefficients (with 4 mm gap polepiece, at 100 keV): Cs = 1.1 mm Cc = 1.1 mm
  • probe jitter relative to sample: <0.1 Å r.m.s.
  • HT stability: better than 1 ppm/minute
  • energy resolution in EELS spectra (at 100 keV): < 20 meV (0.02 eV)
  • AC stray field sensitivity: 1 Å probe motion for 1 mG of stray fields (at 50 or 60 Hz and 100 keV)




Cost for ASU Internal Cost for ASU Internal with Staff Assistance Cost for Other Academic/Non-Profit Cost for Other Academic/Non-Profit with Staff Assistance
$65 $100 $130 $205

Training Requirements


Emergency Information

See ASU Emergency Procedures and Information for emergency procedures for any of the following: Personal Threat or Assault, Power Outage, Major Accidents, Flooding, Hazardous Materials Incident, Radiation Spills, Biological Spills, Suspicious Packages, Natural Disaster & Inclement Weather, Bomb Threat, Evacuation, Medical Emergency, Personal Injury, and Fire.

Emergency Phone Numbers

In an emergency, dial 911 from any campus or other phone.

Call the General ASU Emergency Information Phone at 7-9911 (on-campus phone) or 480-727-9911 or toll-free 877-278-2785 (877-ASU-ASU5) to get a recorded message. For non-emergencies, The ASU Department of Public Safety office can be reached at 5-3465 (on-campus phone) or 480-965-3465.

Users must attend the ASU Lab Safety and Fire Safety courses prior to using any LE-CSSS facility.

More Information


Active users can schedule time using their iLab account with the following link: Nion UltraSTEM 100 Schedule

If you are not currently in iLab please click on the following link:  iLab registration

  • Reserving time on an instrument means that you agree to pay for the entire time reserved at the standard rate whether you use it or not. This policy ensures the efficient use of instrumentation and discourages researchers from blocking up time that they are not going to use. You will also be billed for any time used that exceeds your reservation.

Access Policies: 

The Center for High Resolution Electron Microscopy is organized to provide easy access to instruments by campus-wide ASU researchers. Facility use is a telephone call or e-mail message away.

Although emphasis is placed on accommodating internal (ASU) researchers, all appropriate users, including industrial and educational researchers, are welcome.

Most samples can be accommodated in CHREM microscopes. The exception may be those that are particularly hazardous to human health. No radioactive samples, and the sample must survive in a vacuum and under the electron beam.