Phase-Contrast Images

  • David B. Williams
  • C. Barry Carter


We see phase contrast any time we have more than one beam contributing to the image. In fact, whenever we say “fringes,” we are essentially referring to a phase-contrast phenomenon. Although we often distinguish phase and diffraction contrast, this distinction is generally artificial. For example, in Chapters 24 and 25, we will examine thickness fringes and stackingfault fringes; both types of contrast result from interference of waves so both are phasecontrast images although we usually think of them as two-beam, diffraction-contrast images.


Burger Vector Objective Lens Lattice Plane Fringe Spacing Objective Aperture 
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  1. We encourage you to delve into the early papers on moiré fringes. Search the literature for those by Pashley, Stowell, et al. on Au islands on mica.Google Scholar
  2. The books by Hirsch et al. (1977), Horiuchi (1994), and De Graef (2003) are useful references. That by Spence (2003) is essential follow-up reading (and described in Chapter 1).Google Scholar

Special Topics

  1. Boersch, H, Hamisch, H, Wohlleben, D and Grohmann, K 1920 Z. Phys. 159 397–404. The original analysis of interference fringes from domain walls.Google Scholar
  2. Bursill, LA, Barry, JC, Hudson, PRW 1978 Fresnel Diffraction at {100} Platelets in Diamond Phil. Mag. A37 789–812.Google Scholar
  3. Heavens, OS and Ditchburn, RW 1991 Insight into Optics p 73 John Wiley & Sons New York. Gives a clear treatment of Fresnel fringes.Google Scholar
  4. Hetherington, CJD and Dahmen, U 1992 Scanning Microscopy Supplement 6 p 405 Scanning Microscopy International AMF O'Hare IL.Google Scholar
  5. Krivanek, OL and Rez, P 1980 Proc. 38th Ann. EMSA Meeting p 170 Ed. GW Bailey Claitors Baton Rouge LA.Google Scholar

MoirÉ Fringes

  1. Menter, JW 1956 The Direct Study by Electron Microscopy of Crystal Lattices and Their Imperfections Proc. Roy. Soc. (London) A236 119–135. Classic early work.Google Scholar
  2. Norton, MG and Carter, CB 1995 Moiré Patterns and Their Application to the Study of the Growth of YBa 2 Cu 3 O 7-δ Thin Films J. Mater. Sci. 30 381–389. Islands of YBCO.Google Scholar
  3. Rühle, M and Wilkens, M 1975 Defocusing Contrast of Cavities; Theory Cryst. Lattice Defects 6 129–400. Voids—the definitive work.Google Scholar
  4. Vincent, R 1969 Analysis of Residual Strains in Epitaxial Thin Films Phil. Mag. 19 1127–1139. Showing the magical size effect using moirés.Google Scholar
  5. Wilkens, M 1975 in Electron Microscopy in Materials Science II p 647 Eds. U Valdré and E Ruedl CEC Brussels. A clear explanation of the use of Fresnel fringe theory to analyze voids.Google Scholar

Fresnel Fringes, Surfaces, And Layers of Glass

  1. Clarke, DR 1979 On The Detection of Thin Intergranular Films by Electron Microscopy Ultramicrosc. 4 33–44.Google Scholar
  2. Fukushima, K, Kawakatzu, H and Fukami, A 1974 J. Phys. D7 257. Just surfaces.Google Scholar
  3. Longworth, S 2006 Ph.D. Thesis, Cambridge University. Concludes that the Fresnel fringe technique is not reliable for measuring amorphous films.Google Scholar
  4. Ness, JN, Stobbs, WM and Page, TF 1986 A TEM Fresnel Diffraction-Based Method for Characterizing Interfacial Films Phil. Mag. 54 679–702.Google Scholar
  5. Rasmussen, DR and Carter, CB 1990 On the Fresnel-Fringe Technique for the Analysis of Interfacial Films Ultramicrosc. 32 337–348.Google Scholar
  6. Rasmussen, DR, Simpson, YK, Kilaas, R and Carter, CB 1989 Contrast Effects at Grooved Interfaces Ultramicrosc. 30 52–55.Google Scholar
  7. Simpson, YK, Carter, CB, Morrissey, KJ, Angelini, P and Bentley, J 1986 Identification of Thin Amorphous Films at Grain-Boundaries in Al 2 O 3 J. Mater. Sci. 21 2689–2696. Discussion of different techniques for characterizing these layers.Google Scholar

Fresnel Fringes Interfaces

  1. Carter, CB, Elgat, Z and Shaw, TM 1987 Lateral Twin Boundaries in Spinel Phil. Mag. 55 21–38. Tubes along GBs.Google Scholar
  2. Ross, FM and Stobbs, WM 1991a Study of the Initial Stages of the Oxidation of Silicon Using the Fresnel Method Phil. Mag. A63 1–36.Google Scholar
  3. Ross, FM and Stobbs, WM 1991b Computer Modelling for Fresnel Contrast Analysis Phil. Mag. A63 37–70. The inner potential.Google Scholar
  4. Rühle, M and Sass, SL 1984 Detection of the Change in Mean Inner Potential at Dislocations in Grain Boundaries in NiO Phil. Mag. A49 759–782. Individual dislocations with different Burgers vectors show different Fresnel contract.Google Scholar
  5. Tafto, J, Jones, RH and Heald, SM 1986 Transmission Electron Microscopy of Interfaces Utilizing Mean Inner Potential Differences Between Materials J. Appl. Phys. 60 4316–4318.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of Alabama in HuntsvilleHuntsvilleUSA
  2. 2.University of ConnecticutStorrsUSA

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