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Clarity™ EBSD Analysis System

Clarity™ is the world's first commercial Electron Backscatter Diffraction (EBSD) specific detector based on Direct Detection (DD) technology. This revolutionary approach provides unparalleled pattern quality and sensitivity with no detector read noise and no distortions for optimal performance, opening new doors into the evolution of EBSD pattern detection and analysis.

Clarity™ EBSD Analysis System
EBSD orientation map collected with Clarity from an additively manufactured stainless steel sample showing deformation structure.
EBSD orientation map collected with Clarity from an additively manufactured stainless steel sample showing deformation structure on average.

Current phosphor-based EBSD systems have some drawbacks. Specifically, the grain size of the phosphorescent material and film thickness can decrease the electron-to-photon conversion efficiency, as well as cause localized blooming of the signal. As a result, the optical coupling between the phosphor and the imaging sensor produces imaging artifacts in the EBSD patterns. For Hough-based indexing, such small imperfections may not be crucial, but do limit the fine details within an EBSD pattern for advanced quantitative analysis. Direct detection removes all these steps and corresponding issues from the EBSD collection chain.

Clarity does not require a phosphor screen or light transfer system. The technology uses a CMOS detector coupled to a silicon sensor. The incident electrons generate several electron-hole pairs within the silicon upon impact and a bias voltage moves the charge toward the underlying CMOS detector, where it counts each event. This method is so sensitive that it can detect individual electrons.

Coupled with zero read noise, the Clarity provides unprecedented performance for EBSD pattern collection. It can successfully detect and analyze patterns comprised of less than 10 electrons per pixel. But even this value is slightly misleading, as the electron signal onto the EBSD detector is non-uniform and only the pixels in the middle of the pattern have the highest electron intensity. Near the edge, pixels may only count a few electrons and still produce a usable EBSD pattern.

Features and Benefits

Beam Sensitive Materials Analysis
  • Delivers single-electron sensitivity with zero read noise.
  • Analyzes materials like perovskite solar cells that do not produce useable EBSD patterns under typical beam currents.
  • Eliminates the need for conductive coatings or low-vacuum SEM settings to assess non-conductive materials like ceramics that charge under typical beam currents.
  • At low beam currents, obtains high-quality EBSD patterns and maps for investigating the effects of grain boundaries, grain size, and crystal orientation.
High-quality EBSD patterns collected with Clarity from a) silicon, b) olivine, and c) quartz.
High-quality EBSD patterns collected with Clarity from a) silicon, b) olivine, and c) quartz.
Traditional Materials
  • Uses high-dynamic-range imaging to ensure excellent EBSD pattern quality.
  • Enables the collection of extremely sharp EBSD patterns without using phosphor or optical lenses.
Intensity profile across (113) band from the Hikari Super and Clarity detectors showing improved contrast and sharpness with direct detection.
Intensity profile across (113) band from the Hikari Super and Clarity detectors showing improved contrast and sharpness with direct detection.
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