Plymouth Materials Characterisation Project (PMCP)

State-of-the-art technology for Devon business collaboration

The Plymouth Materials Characterisation Project (PMCP) sees the flagship facility Plymouth Electron Microscopy Centre (PEMC) expand its electron microscopy offer to Devon businesses, presenting a unique opportunity to include 3D electron microscopy in their product analysis.

Local companies will have the chance to use the newly acquired focused ion beam, scanning electron microscope (FIB-SEM) for free, working with two technical specialists as well as expert academic researchers between now and 2020. 

The project is supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), and is expected to make waves across a range of sectors for businesses in Devon as the only commercially available FIB-SEM in the South West.

Plymouth Electron Microscopy Centre (PEMC)

Based in the University of Plymouth, this multi-user facility supports both academic research and commercial customers across a range of disciplines and sectors. PEMC provides access to a comprehensive suite of light microscopes, electron microscopes (EM), imaging processing and analysis software, alongside 80+ years of relevant expertise.

Working with industry for over 30 years, PEMC is a sustainable facility with a wealth of experience working with businesses to identify and explore solutions to product issues, across sectors like engineering, advanced manufacturing, photonics, geology, microelectronics and more.

The FIB-SEM is currently only available to Devon SMEs that are eligible for the PMCP, until project completion in 2020 where it will become commercially available for all. However the rest of PEMC's suite is available commercially to all throughout the project cycle.

Which industries can benefit from the FIB-SEM?

  • @ Advanced manufacturing
  • ? Aerospace
  • @ Archaeology and conservation
  • ? Art
  • @ Biomedical
  • ? Composites
  • @ Geology
  • ? Marine
  • @ Microelectronics
  • ? Mining
  • @ Natural resources
  • ? Photonics
  • @ Planetary science
  • ? Precision engineering
  • @ Recycling
  • ? Renewable energy
  • @ Textiles
  • ? Plus more...

How does the FIB-SEM work?

FIB-SEM stands for 'focused-ion beam, scanning electron microscope'. A typical electron microscope uses a single beam to gather data from a material, using x-rays to image and analyse the sample. The FIB-SEM adds a second beam, the ion-beam, which is able to cut into the material while analysing it to build a 3D stack of data on a nanometre scale.

This pushes the capabilities of the PEMC into a new era, allowing a deeper and more precise understanding of material samples that can lead to better product quality, new material development, waste reduction, and research-led decision making.

Event: EBSD 2018

10 - 11 April 2018, Sherwell Centre - University of Plymouth

The annual EBSD meeting has been a fixed event on the Royal Microscopical Society calendar for over 20 years and we regularly welcome top academics from the UK, European and global research community. The meeting will not only highlight recent technological advances in the field of EBSD and related instrumentation, but also showcase their applications to real-world problems in both the science and engineering disciplines.

EBSD 2018 will bring together specialists from across this broad-reaching speciality; academics, business, technicians and students alike.  

Register your place by Friday 23 March