MCF is adding another XRD!

X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) is a powerful tool to look at crystals for characterizing microstructural and crystallographic properties of powders, thin films, fibers and other solid materials. The MCF has recently added another XRD, a Malvern PANalytical MPD to its capabilities. This XRD has a flat sample stage (default) for the analysis of powders and small solids, a non-ambient stage capable of running from -196C-450C, and a reflectivity stage. It should be on SUMS no later than 8/12/2019!

Image result for ford xrd gatech

A Day In The Life of an XRD!

The Malvern PANalytical Empyrean in the MCF was featured prominently in a story recently posted online!

Many thanks to Neha Kondekar and Xenia Wirth as well as the MSE 2021 class for agreeing to participate!

If you would like to see the blog post, you can see it here!

The core facility for materials analysis at Georgia Tech is the IEN/IMat Materials Characterization Facility (MCF). The MCF is available to academic, industry and government users; it merges several labs on Georgia Tech’s campus and offers a variety of microscopy and characterization tools as well as skilled research staff to support research needs. Offering 24-hour a day shared-user access to the latest in imaging and analysis technology, and operated on a fee rate schedule, the MCF facility provides services for researchers including equipment training, remote sample prep and measurement, and imaging and analysis consultations.

MCF also happens to be where this top public research university and institute of technology houses their Malvern Panalytical Empyrean X-ray diffraction (XRD) instrument. The Empyrean XRD system generates X-rays, directs them toward a sample, and collects diffracted rays (the angle between the incident and the diffracted beam). Collected data are widely used for the identification of unknown crystalline materials (e.g. minerals, inorganic compounds), quantification of crystalline and amorphous materials, thin film thickness and structure, and many more applications. These applications are critical to studies in geology, environmental science, material science, engineering and biology.


May-June 2019 Image Contest Winners!

Congratulations to our image contest winners for May-June 2019!

Morris Satin – Metallic Ripples

Jianshan Liao – Silicon Debris

Katie Young – Mo2C Flake on Copper

Zhiheng Lyu – “Sketches” – Copper Oxide Nanoparticles

You can see detailed images here as well as our previous winners!

MCF is extending its Raman and PL capabilities to Deep UV with a new stand alone Renishaw system

  • Extremely high efficiency 250 mm focal length inVia Reflex spectrograph
  • Stand alone Renishaw Raman unit with solid-state Deep-UV laser (266 nm) and components
  • UV optics for high temperature and high power electronics.
  • Capability for Raman and PL spectroscopy from 200 nm – 1700 nm with automated mapping.
  • Andor InGaAs detector.
  • Ability to measure spectra of photonic materials deep into the UV range (e.g. AlxGa1-xN with up to 75% Al) including materials of Ultra-Wide Bandgap Initiatives.
  • Confocal Raman measurements with different Bright Field objective options
  • Different Grating options include 600 l/mm (NIR) & 3600 I/mm(UV)


Brand New AFM at MCF!

The MCF is getting a new AFM the first week of June 2019 !


Bruker Dimension Icon Scanning Probe Microscopy

Performs all major SPM imaging like…

  • Peak Force Tapping
  • Contact Mode
  • Lateral Force Mode (LFM)
  • Electric Force Mode (EFM)
  • Magnetic Force Mode (MFM)
  • Fluid Imaging
  • Kelvin Probe Microscopy (KPFM)
  • Phase Imaging
  • Lift Mode
  • Force Spectroscopy
  • Force Volume
  • Surface Potential
  • Torsional Resonance (TR) Mode
  • Piezoresponse Microscopy

Samples up to 210 mm in dia/ 15 mm thick

Vertical range (Z) upto 10 microns

X,Y scan range ; 90 x 90 microns

Special Features

  • Can measure ultra low current between probe tip and sample using PeakForce TUNA Mode.
  • Torsional Resonance feedback can be enabled on soft samples using TR TUNA Mode.
  • Can measure variation in conductivity and locate electrical defects of conductive samples using CAFM Mode.
  • New DataCube TUNA & SCM Modes provide Nanoelectrical & Nanomechanical spectra at every point based on Fast Force Volume.
  • Fast Force Mapping Capabilities.
  • Scan Asyst Probe Capabilities with user friendly software.
  • Fully flexible SPM with easily accessible features.

MCF May Image Contest!

The MCF May Image Contest is now live and you can submit your images here!

For information on the rules for submission, those can be seen here!

Also congratulations to the winners in April!
Sunflower – Lyu Zhiheng, Chen Ruhui (Xia – Chemistry)
Polymer Fingers – Liu Su, Tong Xin (Crittenden – Civil & Envir.)
Ultrathin GO membrane – Xin Tong, Liu Su (Crittenden – Civil & Envir.)
KHold Interface – Morris Satin (Rick Neu – ME)

MCF April Image Contest

The month of April is coming to a close, but it isn’t too late to submit an image to our image contest!

You can submit your image here!

If you would like to see all of our previous winners, you can see them here!

And congratulations to our winners in March 2019, Sang Yun Han, Erkul Karacauglu and Katherine Young!



MCF March Image Contest!

The MCF image competition for March is now open and you can submit your images here!

We want to show off your images and what our tools are capable of! If you would like to see the rules for submission you can see those here.

Morris Satin was the winner for January-February and you can see that image (and our previous images that won) here!

Crystalmaker Software Suite now being hosted by OIT

The Crystalmaker Software Suite (Crystalmaker X, Single Crystal 3.1, CrystalDiffract 6) are now all available for download from the OIT website. The MCF has acquired a site license for Georgia Tech and it is available for academic use.

Enter the EnvisioNano Image Contest! Deadline Dec 31, 2018!

EnvisioNano is a contest for undergraduate and graduate students conducting nanotechnology research in the United States and U.S. territories. Students should submit striking nanoscale images that demonstrate how beautiful the nanoscale can be alongside thoughtful, concise descriptions of the research behind the picture and how it may lead to nanotechnologies that benefit society. The goal is to envision where your research is headed and explain how “seeing” at the nanoscale is important to reaching that vision.  See the most recent winning image here!

For details and submission guidelines, please go here: