A Bruker Hysitron PI 89 PicoIndenter has recently been installed on our TESCAN MIRA3 SEM, which makes it possible to perform nanomechanical testing while simultaneously imaging.
The PI 89 has a standard low load (maximum indent 10mN / tensile 10mN) transducer and a high load (maximum indent 500mN / tensile 100mN) transducer. The maximum range of displacement along the indentation axis is 150um. Load or displacement-controlled testing modes enable nanoindentation, compression, tension, fatigue, creep or bending tests. A standard Berkovich probe, 1um, 5um and 20um flat-end probe, cube corner probe, or cono-spherical probe with a tip radius less then 1um are available for different types of testings.
A customized gripper to grab a sample for a direct-pull test can be made using the focused ion beam instruments at (MC)2. With in-situ heating elements applied to the probe and the sample, indentation at a temperature up to 800C is achievable. A unique tilt-rotation stage (maximum 400mN) makes sample orientation flexible and is especially useful for in-situ electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) measurements. This new technique will allow users to expand exploration of nanomechanical properties of materials at (MC)2.