AIM Facility

A scientific imaging and characterisation facility integrating and correlating data from optical, electron and X-ray techniques.



Imaging Platforms 

Keywords - Light Microscopy: Widefield microscopy | Correlated optical and SEM imaging and characterisation techniques | High depth of field optical microscopy
Keywords - Electron Microscopy: Transmission EM| Scanning EM (FEG)| Focused Ion Beam SEM | Integrated Light and SEM | Scanning Transmission EM | Scanning EM (Tungsten) | Characterisation techniques: EDS, EBSD, WDS, EELS
Keywords - X-Ray Microscopy: MicroCT 

These include OM, SEM, FIB, TEM/STEM, X-RayCT, XRM imaging techniques, allied to XPS, XRD, EDS, EBSD, WDS, EELS characterisation. Correlative techiques in 2D and 3D combination multi modal datasets.


Keywords - Biological: Bio-materials | Biomimetics
Keywords - Physical Sciences: Bioengineering & Biomaterials | Corrosion/Oxidation | Semiconductors & Opotoelectronics | Optical & Photonic Materials and Devices | Catalysts | Ionic conductors |  fuel cells and batteries | Metallurgy/Alloy development | Functional oxides | Nanomaterials | Composites | Magnetics |  magnetic materials & spintronics | Polymers & organic electronics 

The Facility are core laboratories for the College of Engineering in Swansea University but is open to all departments and multidisciplinary work. Analysis for external universites and industrial clients is also fulfilled regularly.

Sample Preparation 

Keywords - Biological: Resin embedding | Metal coating | Correlative Light & EM | Freeze fracture
Keywords - Materials: Argon ion thinning | Focused ion beam (Gallium) | Electropolishing

The main preparation laboratories in the College of Eng are focussed on largely Materials research but have a wide range of standard techniques. In addition broad beam and focussed ion beam techniques are available as well electropolishing and etching.

Data Analysis 

Keywords - Software: ImageJ | AxioVision | Fiji | Digital Micrograph/GMS | HRTEM simulation packages (various) | Zeiss ZE suite | ATLAS 3D FIB serial sectioning and numerous CT 3D data processing
Keywords - Hardware: SEM | FEGSEM | FIB | TEM | STEM | EELS | X-Ray CT | XRM | XPS | XRD | EDS | EDX | EBSD | WDS

Shared Access

The facility is open to collaboration in work from within Swansea University, external universities and well as commercial and industrial applications.

Funding Overview 

The Advanced Imaging of Materials (AIM) Facility is a £10M EPSRC / Welsh Government funded integrated scientific imaging and characterisation facility created in the College of Engineering, Swansea University.

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Point of Contact

AIM Facility
AIM Facility, College of Engineering
Swansea University Bay Campus
Fabian Way
Swansea, SA1 8EN , United Kingdom

Point of Contact

Peter Davies / James Russell, 01792604244

Staff List

Prof Cameron Pleydell Pearce
Prof Richard Johnston
Mr Peter Davies
Dr James Russell
Dr Tom Dunlop
Dr James McGettrick
Dr Yubiao Niu