Nanocrystal Thickness Information from Z-Stem: 3-D Imaging in One Shot


We have applied Atomic Number Contrast Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy (Z-Contrast STEM) towards the study of colloidal CdSe semiconductor nanocrystals embedded in MEH-PPV polymer films.

For typical nanocrystal thicknesses, the image intensity is a monotonie function of thickness. Hence an atomic column-resolved image provides information both on the lateral shape of the nanocrystal, as well as the relative thickness of the individual columns.

We show that the Z-Contrast image of a single CdSe nanocrystal is consistent with the predicted 3-D model derived from considering HRTEM images of several nanocrystals in different orientations. We further discuss the possibility of measuring absolute thicknesses of atomic columns if the crystal structure is known.

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The research presented here was funded by the Department of Energy, Basic Energy Sciences, Materials Sciences Division.

We wish to thank R. Puetter for performing the pixon reconstruction shown. We also wish to thank A. Yahil and Pixon LLC for a research use licence to the commercial PixonTM code.

AVK gratefully acknowledges the assistance of P. D. Nellist, B. E. Rafferty and M. F. Chisholm in the operation of the STEM.

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Correspondence to A. V. Kadavanich.

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Kadavanich, A.V., Kippeny, T., Erwin, M. et al. Nanocrystal Thickness Information from Z-Stem: 3-D Imaging in One Shot. MRS Online Proceedings Library 589, 229 (1999).

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