Experimental setup

Nanoplast experimental setup is composed of 3 interconnected UHV chambers. The first chamber (on the right on the image below) is dedicated to sample surface preparation. The surface is controled via Auger Electron Spectroscopy (AES) and Low Electron Diffraction (LEED). The second chamber (middle) hosts the compression stage and the microscope for in situ experiments. The third one (on the left) is dedicated to UHV ex situ experiments, which means that it is no more possible to image the surfaces of the materials while straining.

The main caracteristics of Nanoplast setup are the following:

  • Base pressure: < 8. 10-11 mbar in preparation chamber,  < 5. 10-11 mbar in microscope chamber
  • Surface preparation by Ar ion milling and heating up to  1300 K
  • In situ mechanical compression stress up to  σ = 500 MPa and total deformation  ε = 15% for standards  6x2x2 mm3 samples
  • Atomic resolution maintained under stress
  •  Real time imaging during deformation  (fig 3) via atomic force microscopy  (AFM) or scanning tunnelling microscopy (STM)
  • Ex situ UHV mechanical testing in compression up to T= 1500K

 

Nanoplast experimental equipment

 

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