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Human Blood Cells: Red blood cells/Platelets/White blood cells. Louisa Howard.

This course will introduce participants to methods of sample preparation and SEM parameters and operation needed for accurate analysis.



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Targeted Participants

Individuals who currently perform or will be responsible for the preparation of samples and/or operation of the SEM in a research, academic, or industrial setting.



Lecture, demonstration and hands-on practice, as well as round table discussion. Participants are encouraged to bring their own samples, if possible.


Main Curriculum

  • Identification and isolation of ROI
  • Theory and hands-on chemical processing
  • Theory and hands-on CPD, HMDS, and Hitachi's ionic liquid
  • Theory and hands-on freeze drying
  • Mounting
  • Theory and hands-on Sputter coating
  • SEM theory and discussion of parameters affecting image quality
  • Demonstration and hands-on practice of SEM operation and effects of  parameters
  • Theory and demonstration and hands-on practice of variable pressure and Hitachi's ionic liquid


Instruments Available

  • Hitachi S3500 SEM
  • K850 CPD
  • EMS 9000 Microwave
  • Q150T ES Plus Sputter Coater


Enrollment Note

Registration will be limited to a maximum of 15 participants.
EMS will provide samples to those who prefer not to bring their own

Biological SEM: A Complete Picture

  • The preparation of samples will start with determination of ROI and subsequent selection of gross cut orientation and determination of which dehydration technique to use: freeze drying, HMDS, Hitachi’s ionic liquid or critical point drying (CPD). The chemical processing required before CPD will be stressed. Special attention will be paid to orientation, stability and grounding of the sample when mounting to facilitate ease of imaging. The advantages, disadvantages and instrument requirements for the various coating materials: Au, Pt, Pt/Pd will be discussed.


    Selection of accelerating voltage (kV) and spot size are critical for surface detail, resolution, and charging and will be covered in detail. Parameters such as working distance for depth of field (Dfi) and resolution, plus tilt and raster rotate will be examined for proper image collection.

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