Interdisciplinary Center for Electron Microscopy

Booking of Microscopes

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Independent of your rights in our booking system: Access to EPFL Campus and labs is only allowed from 7am to10pm (7h00 – 22h00) at the moment

Dear CIME users,

We are as happy as you about the new directives and protection plan effective as of 8 June. These directives have to be respected at any time when using CIME equipment.

What does it mean in particular for the use of CIME equipment?

Point 5: People authorized to be on campus

EPFL staff who have been included in their units’ work schedules are allowed to be on campus in keeping with those schedules. DSPS authorization is not required.

Exceptions for master students etc. are possible only with an accepted request (for details see the full directive with link).

If you imperatively have to bring another collaborator with you: Respect the safety rules: gloves (available at CIME) & mask (bring your own mask like the ones distributed by the DSPS over nose and mouth)!
In order to be able to trace person that are not logged through the logging/billing system: add the name of your colleague in the remarks field at logout.

Point 7: working hours

Working hours run from 7am to 10pm. Start your experiment early enough in order to finish at 10pm!

Employees are not permitted to work on site over the weekend or on holidays unless absolutely necessary.
The unit head (lab director) determines what is imperative work (example: time critical experiments in a workflow chain). A free slot on a weekend is not imperative!

The unit head has to state by e-mail to [email protected] (with “imperative weekend work” in the subject line) that this work is essential in order for the unit to fulfil its mission. You need to be able to show this also to security personnel if asked.

Service and Training

Service work (in presence of client) executed by CIME personnel and trainings will be possible again. You have to bring your own mask (EPFL supply). Gloves are available at the entrance of the microscope rooms.

Thank you for your cooperation

Marco Cantoni

5 June 2020


For the work on the microscopes:

Once you have entered through the glass door into the main hallway you will find a table with gloves. Put gloves on for your entire stay in the CIME (for touching keyboards, mice, joysticks, door handles etc. ). Before you touch the sample holders and your samples put an ADDITIONAL pair of gloves over the first ones in order to keep the holders and your sample clean. After use, dispose them as usual. After your session, when you leave the CIME dispose the gloves into the trash bin at the exit. For the use of the binoculars and handling liquid nitrogen: Bring your personal safety “lab” glasses with you so that you don´t get into direct contact with the eye pieces of the binoculars.

For the main preparation room and other preparation facilities:

For short access (preparing a powder sample, metal coating, plasma cleaning, embedding etc.): please respect the maximum number of persons allowed per room (indicated on the door). Wait if necessary.
For the use of the polishing station in MXC-117:
There will be only one polishing station available and reservation will be necessary. If you plan to polish samples ask Daniele Laub (or Gregoire Baroz) for the rights on the “polishing machine MXC-117” in the reservation system. For the use of the microscopes and binoculars: Bring your personal safety “lab” glasses with you so that you don´t get into direct contact with the eye pieces of the binoculars.

All the rules and recommendations from the DSPS have to be respected strictly at any time.

After entering the MXC building and when you leave the CIME: wash your hands. There are restrooms at both ends of the hallways.


We are looking forward to seeing you back in the CIME

For the CIME Team

Marco Cantoni


Still valid for telework:

If you need a specific software to treat your data: Almost all the EM software can be installed on your PC. We have network licenses (that require a VPN connection), license-free software and single platform licences (we have received temporary licenses from manufacturers). You should be able to work on your data like if you were at the CIME.

Check our Support page for more information about software.


CIME Workshop on STEM

Postponed due to the pandemic

CIME Day 2020 6 March, Rolex Forum

best picture: Andrea Giunto

best Life-Science: Nathan RIGUET, SV-LMNN
Nathan RIGUET Poster CIME2020 Final

best poster Materials Science: Fabien GEORGET, STI-IMX-LMC

Seminar announcement:

Seminar announcement: Friday 29th of November, MXC-315

eCHORD a method of mapping orientations with high resolution in SEM

Dr. Cyril Langlois, Laboratoire MATEIS INSA Lyon

The “Microscopies” team of the MATEIS laboratory (INSA Lyon) has developed a new method of mapping orientations and phases based on an electron-matter interaction that is starting to be exploited thanks to the improvement of the detectors and processing computers in the last decades. This is the electron channeling by the crystalline planes, a phenomenon that explains the contrast between the grains on an electron microscopy image. In this talk, the principle of using the channeling phenomenon to go back to the crystalline orientation (eCHORD approach) will be explained. The main advantages of the eCHORD technique are a better spatial resolution thanks to the low voltage (possible mappings down to 1 kilovolt instead of the usual 10kV in EBSD), and simplicity of use (simplified acquisition geometry, no additional detector in the microscope). The performances of the technique will be put forward, especially in comparison with the EBSD.

New online cours on transmission electron microscopy

Transmission Electron Microscopy for Materials Science new on Coursera:

Built from the ground up, the course is intended to be a starting point for understanding and working with TEM; to be used either as a stand alone resource, or in complement to books and in person teaching or coaching. We hope that it proves useful to our electron microscopy community, and look forward to receiving any feedback.

With regards

Cécile Hébert and Duncan Alexander



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