However, the first phase of the cooperation project conducted between 2009 and 2011 – in which researchers analyzed the feasibility of the key principles involved – has produced some spectacular results, with the scientists successfully generating atomic-resolution images at accelerating voltages well below 80 kV. Based on this initial success, the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the Ministry for Science, Research and Art from the Federal State of Baden-Wuerttemberg (MWK/BW) support the SALVE project in its second phase with 3.2Mio € (DFG) and 2.1 Mio € (MWK/BW).
During celebrations to mark the start of the project’s second phase, Project Manager Professor Ute Kaiser from the University of Ulm and a number of guest speakers, including Nobel Prize winner Klaus von Klitzing, presented some of the fascinating ways in which the SALVE system could potentially be used. Ranging from studies of superconductors and semiconductors to research into lithium-ion batteries, plastics and biological materials, some of the examples they highlighted have already yielded preliminary results.
Carl Zeiss NTS General Manager Dr. Peter Fruhstorfer was enthusiastic about the new phase of the project: “Low-voltage electron microscopy is a fast-growing field of application for transmission electron microscopy, largely due to the properties of modern materials, such as their size, form and sensitivity to radiation. We are looking forward to tackling the challenging task of developing solutions in this area.” He also stressed how SALVE will give the companies involved a significant competitive edge.
While Carl Zeiss presses ahead with development of the system itself, the University of Ulm will be working on application development and conducting research into sample preparation methods. Meanwhile, the third project partner, CEOS, having a lot of expertise in the development of advanced electron optical systems, is focusing its efforts on a new optimized corrector to compensate the chromatic and the spherical aberration for low voltages.
The Carl Zeiss Group is a leading group of companies operating worldwide in the optical and opto-electronic industries. Carl Zeiss offers innovative solutions for the future-oriented markets of Medical and Research Solutions, Industrial Solutions, Eye Care and Lifestyle Products. During fiscal year 2009/10 the group of companies generated revenues of around EUR 2.98 billion. From fiscal year 2010/11 onward, eyeglass lens manufacturer Carl Zeiss Vision will be integrated as an autonomous business group (revenues of EUR 880 million in fiscal year 2009/10). The Carl Zeiss Group now has approximately 24,000 employees, including more than 10,000 in Germany. The Carl Zeiss business groups hold leading positions in their markets. Carl Zeiss AG, Oberkochen, is fully owned by the Carl Zeiss Stiftung (Carl Zeiss Foundation).
Carl Zeiss NTS GmbH is the Nano Technology Systems Division of Carl Zeiss. As a pioneer in electron microscopy with more than 60 years of experience, Carl Zeiss NTS is one of the leading manufacturers of electron and ion-optical systems for the imaging, physical and chemical analysis and measurement of specimens with resolution in the picometer range. The company offers a broad spectrum of application and service solutions for the fields of nanotechnology, materials research and life sciences. Carl Zeiss NTS GmbH is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany, and has subsidiaries in England, France, the USA and Singapore. The company has a global workforce of about 650 people.