Methods - Electron Microscopy

Very small structures can be visualized with high resolution using electron microscopy. This is realized by using electron beams that have a much smaller wavelength compared to the visible light.

There are two basic types of electron microscopes. A scanning electron microscope displays the surface of objects and gives a three-dimensional impression of the sample. In contrast, the transmission electron microscope enables a view into the interior of the objects and produces a two-dimensional image. For this purpose, thin slices of the samples are generally necessary to allow the electrons to penetrate.

The samples must be anhydrous for working in high vacuum. This requires appropriate preparation of biological samples for electron microscopy.


The Imaging Facility offers the following preparation methods:

  • Conventional preparation method for scanning electron microscopy
  • Conventional preparation method for transmission electron microscopy
  • Negative Staining
  • Immunocytochemistry