Low crystallinity and nanodomains
The capability of collecting automatic 3D single crystal EDT data with high spatial resolutions (150 nm) allows investigating structural problems for low crystallinity and small size single crystal domains ( Gemmi et al. 2015). A material with ordered domains of a few hundreds of nm can be studied as a collection of single crystals on which we can collect 3D EDT data about structure quality. Nanoparticles embedded in a matrix, amorphous or not, and crystals with polytypic sequences at the nanoscale can be also studied. For the first time using powder diffraction methods, we have the possibility to study the solid state at a scale at which only an average description was available, until now ( Gemmi et al. 2016).
EDT on beam sensitive materials
Beam sensitive materials are a challenging class of materials to be investigated by EDT, unfortunately, a lot of crystalline materials with high scientific and commercial impact belong to this category. Dealing with Material Sciences, the most promising ones are zeolites and MetallOrgainc Framework (MOF), while, concerning organic compounds, pharmaceutical substances and proteins are definitely the most interesting ones. In addition to beam sensitivity, a common issue in structure investigation of these materials is the difficulty in obtaining large single crystals. Therefore, EDT is a perfect candidate for a breakthrough in crystal structure analysis. We developed a fast EDT procedure that, combined with a new generation single electron diffraction camera (MEDIPIX2 detector acquired thanks to a Regione Toscana contribution), allows fast data collection with dose lower that 0.05 e/(Å2s). In this way, all the materials described above can be studied with EDT before the amorphization by the electron beam occurs and on a scale never reached by other diffraction techniques ( Simancas et al. 2016).
Correlative Micro-CT and TEM imaging
We are developing new TEM methods for the observation of biological samples. The aim is to develop a technique that, in cases of pathologies spread across entire organs or districts, gives a global view at low resolution and a local view at ultrastructural level at the same time. In order to reach this goal, we designed a correlation method between X-Ray tomography (Micro-CT, in collaboration with SYRMEP beamline at Elettra - Sincrotrone Trieste) and TEM ( Parlanti et al. 2017).