Recent progress in scanning transmission electron microscope imaging and analysis: application to nanoparticles and 2D nanomaterials
This chapter summarises recent applications of scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM) based imaging and analysis to characterise nanomaterials. We focus on two areas of nanoscience that have developed rapidly in recent years: two dimensional (2D) crystals and inorganic nanoparticles. The discovery of graphene has led to an explosion of interest in exploring the structure and properties of other 2D crystals. The STEM provides a powerful tool for obtaining local structural data for this new class of materials, aiding the transition from scientific curiosity to engineering applications. In contrast, inorganic nanoparticles are already widely applied in a range of applications, including catalysis, medical imaging and in solar cells. Here the principle challenge for the STEM is to elucidate structure–property relationships in established systems, in order to aid the development of more controllable, lower cost, synthesis routes and improve performance for each application.