JEOL SEMple Imaging Competition: Guidelines


The scanning electron microscope uses a high vacuum (no air) environment for imaging. As a result, below are some guidelines to help you understand if your sample is suitable or not.

  • Prepared dry samples mounted onto SEM stubs are preferred. Coated samples ready for SEM imaging and analysis are also acceptable.
  • Dry unmounted samples will be acceptable as long as they are straightforward to mount onto SEM stubs.
  • Non-hazardous wet samples are acceptable only if they can be air dried onto SEM stubs, or dried using a simple in-situ freeze drying technique.
  • Biological samples must be fixed and dehydrated where appropriate.
  • Toxic samples, hazardous nanoparticles, unfixed biological hazards and other similar samples cannot be accepted.
  • All samples must come with a COSHH form both electronically and with the samples.
  • Please see:, pages 24-26 for basic guidance on SEM sample preparation. If you are unsure on what your sample requires in preparations, select the “help” option and we can discuss if you are selected.

Samples must be sent on the week of the 2nd November, to arrive no later than the 9th of November. JEOL accepts no responsibility for late arrival of samples, or if the samples will be tested if arriving after this date.

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