2D Materials / Alfa Chemistry
Scanning Electron Microscope for 2D Materials
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Scanning Electron Microscope for 2D Materials

The exceptional mechanical, thermal, and electrical capabilities of two-dimensional (2D) materials have drawn a lot of attention. In the recent decade, materials like graphene and transition metal disulfides have been some of the most intensely explored. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) has evolved into a versatile instrument for analyzing a wide range of materials. Alfa Chemistry provides SEM testing services to assess the surface topography of 2D materials, which is vital for understanding 2D material properties because of their adaptability and extremely high spatial resolution. Please contact us right away so that we can help you with your tests!


SEM generates images by detecting reflected or knocked-out electrons, which provides information on the surface and composition of a 2D material sample. An electron source, a set of electromagnetic and electrostatic lenses for controlling the form and course of the electron beam, and an electron aperture are the key components. The SEM uses a specific set of coils to scan the beam and collect the scattered electrons in a raster-like manner.

SEM is a non-contact, primarily non-destructive, and relatively more convenient and efficient tool for rapid imaging and is therefore attractive for characterizing 2D materials at the micron and nanoscale, including wrinkles, fold lines, and grain shapes, especially for CVD-grown graphene.

SEM images of graphene grown over the Cu substrate.Fig 1. SEM images of graphene grown over the Cu substrate: (a) -SE1 image, (b) -BSE image; cracks and folds in graphene sheet marked with red and yellow arrows, respectively. (Jóźwik I, et al. 2016)

SEM provides a 3D image of the sample surface. SEM should be chosen if the customer wants to obtain information about the surface of a 2D material sample, such as roughness or contamination detection.SEM samples require little or no effort during sample preparation and can be imaged directly by mounting them on an aluminum column.

Service Detail

Testing ServicesScanning Electron Microscope (SEM)
Test ContentEDS, Mapping, EBSD, Mapping, Gold Plating
Sample TypePowder / Film / Bulk / Liquid
Instrument ModelHitachi SU8010 High Resolution Field Emission SEM, ZEISS MERLIN Compact Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope (FESEM)
Lead Time2~3 Weeks

Our requirements for samples are as follows:

  • For bulk samples: Length/Width/Thickness < 1 cm.
  • For film samples: Length/Width < 1 cm.
  • For powder samples: ≥ 10 mg.
  • Liquid samples: ≥5 mL.

Sample composition requirements


  • Alfa Chemistry will make every effort to test its 2D nanomaterials for its customers, but does not guarantee that the expected results will be obtained. This applies especially to magnetic samples or samples with poor electrical conductivity. We appreciate your understanding.
  • SEM photos from Alfa Chemistry are accessible at magnifications ranging from 50KX to 100KX, however photo quality is dependent on sample circumstances.
  • All samples are non-returnable, please contact Alfa Chemistry with any special requests.


  1. Jóźwik I, et al. (2016). "Scanning Electron Microscope at Low Voltage Operation - A Unique Characterization Tool for Graphene Layers." Electronic Materials. 44: 11-16.

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Alfa Chemistry provides cost effective, high quality and hassle free services to our clients worldwide. We guarantee on-time delivery of our results.

If you have any questions at any time during this process, please contact us. We will do our best to meet your needs.

Please kindly note that our products are for research use only.