Sensitivity limits of strain mapping procedures using high-resolution electron microscopy

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Strain detection limits achieved by several approaches of strain mapping differing in the procedure of determining positions of intensity maxima have been compared. Algorithms which simultaneously take into account the two-dimensional intensity distribution around maximum positions yield similar detection limits and are superior to those performing successive one-dimensional cuts. Investigations of the effect of image recording imply that the use of photographic plates is superior to direct image recording using a slow-scan CCD camera because of larger sampling rates and a larger field of view. It is finally shown that the choice of specimen preparation technique substantially affects the strain detection limit with cleaved samples yielding results which are a factor of about three better than ion-milled samples.

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