The Quanta FEG 250, scanning electron microscopes, is versatile, high-performance instrument with three modes (high vacuum, low vacuum and ESEM) to accommodate the widest range of samples of any scanning electron microscope (SEM) system. The Quanta FEG 250 system is equipped with analytical systems, such as energy dispersive spectrometer, wavelength dispersive x-ray spectroscopy and electron backscatter diffraction. In addition, the field emission gun (FEG) systems contain a S/TEM detector for bright-field and dark-field sample imaging.


  • Nano Characterization
    • Metal and alloys, oxidation, corrosion, fractures, welds, polished sections, magnetic and superconducting materials.
    • Ceramic, composites, plastics
    • Films, coating
    • Geological sections, minerals
    • Soft materials: Polymers, pharmaceuticals, filters, gels, tissues, plant material
    • Particles, porous materials, fibers
  • In situ Nano processes
  • Nano Prototyping




Policies and procedures

1. Micro-Imaging Research Facility is a multi-user facility that provides services to LLU faculty, staff and students as well as to external users.

2. Instrumentation use and services provided by the Micro-Imaging Research Facility (MRF) are subject to fees.


1. Access to MRF must be granted by the facility Director.

2. User can utilize MRF services after approval of the online “Project Request Form”.

3. Facility staff provides services and assistance to users. Users may request to utilize facility staff’s expertise for operation of instruments, sample preparation, data acquisition, and interpretation. Users are allowed to operate the scanners directly only after training.

4. LLU users are required to provide the invoice account and authorized by the titular personal investigator (PI), Cost Center Administration and Department Chair before services are rendered.

5. To gain access to MRF services external users need to provide billing street address, contact phone and fax numbers and a statement of acceptance of financial responsibility for the requested services based on the estimates provided by MRF staff. Advanced payment may be requested under certain circumstances.

Scheduling and Reservations

1. All services and instruments are accessible by advanced appointment only, on first-come-first-serve basis.

2. Appointments are made by contacting the facility staff.

Consulting for Custom Applications

In case the application is novel, or the user does not know the appropriate settings for the scan, we offer consulting at the same fee schedule reported on a per hour basic SEM training ($135). Consulting with the MRF Staff (sdmicroimaging@llu.edu) constitutes intellectual contribution to the work and must be credited in publications at the discretion of the facility director as agreed in the consulting form. After the project is conceived, continuous assistance can be provided through the project up to publication level at no charge.


Cancellation of appointment less than 24 hours before the starting time is subject to penalty fee equivalent to 2 hours per day of the specific service rate.

Data Storage

1. Electronic user files and data stored on MRF computers are kept for a period of 30 days from the date of creation. Two emails will be sent to investigators to warn about data deletion during this period. After expiration of this period all user files and data will be deleted and no refund will be provided.

2. Users are responsible to provide an external hard drive (generic USB Hub, USB 3.0, USB Root Hub) before data deletion. It is the responsibility of the user to verify the content on the hard drive once it has been returned and received.


1. Payments should be made in US dollars and are processed through the MRF business office. Users can remit payments only by invoice order.

2. Bills are submitted after services have been rendered except in case when advanced payment is specifically requested.

User application

Facility Rates

The Micro-Imaging Research Facility utilizes a three-tiered pricing structure:

  • Tier 1 - LLUSD Faculty, staff and students
  • Tier 2 - LLU other schools
  • Tier 3 - General commercial customers/Non-LLU
Service/Item LLUSD LLU Other NonLLU
SEM Quanta 250 FEG $43 /hr $70 /hr $100 /hr
Operator assistance $40 /hr $60 /hr $60 /hr
Basic SEM Training $135 /session $200 /session $280 /session
Advanced Training $25 /hr $60 /hr $80 /hr
Sample preparation $32 /hr $60 /hr $60 /hr
Sputter coating $9 /min $12 /min $12 /min
Advanced support & consultation $62 /hr $100 /hr $100 /hr

10% discount on the electron microscope rates for usage above 20 hrs per month per LLU PI.
10% discount on the electron microscope external rates for usage above 10 hrs per month per customer.