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Osmium Plasma Coater
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Vacuum Electron Staining Apparatus

Conductive thin film production device for electron microscope sample preparation
Osmium Plasma Coater
Product details/Lineup/Accessories/Technical data/Contract service/Maintenance

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Osmium Plasma Coater(OPC) is the plasma coating device that uses the DC glow discharge method to coat conductive thin film mainly for SEM samples.

Product Details

オスミウム・プラズマコーター オスミウムコーター
Benefits of Osmium Plasma Coater

Operability Osmium Conductive Film Plasma-Polymerized
Naphthalene Hydrocarbon Film
Simple Automatic Operation
(Only need to set the thickness of the film and then push start button)
Detachable Osmium Reservoir
The sealed structure of the reservoir allows cryopreservation
Easy Confirmation of The Remaining Amount
(A small view port allows confirmation of the remaining amount of the OsO4/naphthalene crystal.)
Short Coating Time
(a few nm/a few seconds)
High Security
(An interlock circuit is equipped.)
No Granule
The osmium thin film is not granular.
The microstructure of the specimen surface can be faithfully molded.
OsO4 will sublimate before coating process.
No Heat Damage
The coating process is at room temperature. Thus, the specimen will not go through a heat process.
No Electron Beam Damage
The melting temperature of Osmium is 2700℃, whick is much higher than the ones of Pt or Pd. So osmium conductive metal coating is not damaged nor deformed by heat when exposed to strong electron beam.
No contamination
In the regative glow phase domain of the DC glow discharge, where only osmium metal molecules are positively ionized, highly concentrated positive ion osmium molecules adhere uniformly, deposit densely and form the thin layer in molecular level on the specimen which is electrically insulate.
The film can withstand the gallium ions that used in FIB(Focused Ion Beam) system.
No Granule
The plasma-polymerized hydrocarbon film is not granular.
The microstructure of the specimen surface can be faithfully molded.
Naphthalene will sublimate before coating process
No Heat Damage
The coating process is at room temperature. Thus, the specimen will not go through a heat process.
No Electron Beam Damage


A small amount of osmium tetroxide(OsO4)gas / naphthalene gas(C10H18) is introduced into the small gas reaction vessel that equips with an anode plate and a cathode plate.
Then, in the gas reaction vessel, when a DC glow discharge is generated under a thin sublimation gas pressure, the osmium metal molecules excited by the collision of electrons instantaneously become plasma between the two electrodes. The positive column and the negative glow phase are separated, and the blue-violet light of the negative glow phase emits.
At the same time, the positive ion metal molecules instantly adhere to the surface of the specimen, which is placed in the negative glow phase area on the cathode plate, and an osmium metal thin film/plasma-polymerized film(naphthalene) is formed.
With an osmium metal thin film on the surface of the SEM specimen, an extremely clear image can be obtained.


Conductive Ultra-thin Film
Observation of the ultrafine structure of insulators by FE-SEM
Quantitative analysis of top surface of insulators by ESCA or AES
(Auger Electron Spectroscopy)
Enhancement of conductivity for TEM specimen
Static prevention treatment for AFM specimen
Antistatic treatment for STM specimen
Etching(Mixed gas method only)

Osmium Thin Film
Conductive thin film for SEM specimen
Prevention of contamination for SEM/TEM specimen
Protective film for AFM specimen
COnductive protective film for SPM specimen
Protective film for SPM cantilever
Plasma-polymerized Film
Protective film for FIB specimen
Prevention of peeling between embedding resin and sample
Coating for fluorine resin
(Naphthalene-osmium hybrid coating
Support film for TEM grid
Drift prevention for ultra-thin sections for TEM

Plasma-Polymerized Film (TEM image)
Direct Magnification:×100,000
Coating Material:Naphthalene
Coating Thickness:10nm

The Merit of Automatic Operation

Our current model of the osmium plasma coater (we have manual model in the past) is fully automatc.
After placing the specimen on the sample stage, closing the gas reaction vessel and setting the thickness of the film, you can coat a film simply by pressing the start button.
Since there is no complicated manual operation, there are no artificial film thickness errors. Thus, the current automatic model has excellent repeatability and higher safety.

Comparison of operability Automatic Model
(current model)
Manual Model
(old model)
Preparation Place the specimen in the gas reaction vessel.
Coating Vacuuming Press the START button, then the coating process will proceed automatically.

Automatic coating procedure
1. 「Vacuuming」
2. 「Introducing Osmium gas」
3. 「Adjusting Osmium gas flow」
4. 「Controlling the film thickness(Coating)」
5. 「Releasing Osmium gas」

Since the film thickness can be set in a nm unit, the control is very simple.

Because an
interlock circuit is equipped, the gas reaction vessel will not open if the "releasing the Osmium gas” step is not done.
Vacuum the gas reaction vessel to the specified vacuum degree, which should be confirmed visually.
Introducing the Osmium gas Introduce the Osmium gas by rotating the valve.
Adjusting the Osmium gas flow Adjust the Osmium gas flow manually by the rotary valve, while checking the vacuum degree of the Osmium gas or other indicating meters.
Controlling the film thickness
Since the film thickness is determined by the correlation between the current value and time of discharge, rotate the rotary valve manually to adjust the current value.
Exhausting the Osmium gas Close the valve to stop the introducing of Osmium gas, then fully open the rotary valve manually to release the gas from the gas reaction vessel.
Because this model do not have an interlock circuit, it is possible to open the gas reaction vessel without conducting the "releasing the Osmium gas" step.

About the Osmium Reservoir

Osmium Reservoir
Osmium Tetroxide ampule

Fully open
(When attaching to the device)
・・・ Staining gas is filled up to the front of the solenoid valve.
(Not detachable)
(When releasing gas in the pipes
・・・ By turning the gas introduction knob to the marked line and opening the solenoid valve, the staining gas in the introduction pipes can be released. (Not detachable)
Fully closed
(Detachable state)
・・・ By completely closing the gas introduction knob, the Osmium reservoir is sealed and can be safely removed from the Osmium plasma coater.

Fully open
 (When attaching to the device)
 (When releasing gas in the pipes)
③Fully closed
 (Detachable state)

When the Osmium reservoir is sealed, it can be detached safely.

・Osmium tetroxide(OsO4) ampule can be placed inside the reservoir, and the ampule can be cut inside.
・When the reservoir is at fully closed state, it can be removed and ready for cryopreservation.
・It can also minimize the loss due to osmium sublimation when it is not in use.
・There are two types of osmium tetroxide ampoules, which have 100mg and 500mg OsO4 each.

Product Osmium reservoir
Outer Dimension 70(W)×45(D)×120(H)mm
Weight About 480g

Inquiries Reagent & Scientific Instrument Dept.: P.+81-52-624-4388
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