A new fabrication method of carbon based phase plates for phase-contrast transmission electron microscopy is presented. This method utilizes colloidal masks to produce pores as well as disks on thin carbon membranes for phase modulation. Since no serial process is involved, carbon phase plate membranes containing hundreds of pores can be mass-produced on a large scale, which allows 'disposal' of contaminated or degraded phase modulating objects after use. Due to the spherical shape of the mask colloid particles, the produced pores are perfectly circular. The pore size and distribution can be easily tuned by the mask colloid size and deposition condition. By using the stencil method, disk type phase plates can also be fabricated on a pore type phase plate. Both pore and disk type phase plates were tested by measuring amorphous samples and confirmed to convert the sinus phase contrast transfer function to the cosine shape.
Sannomiya, Takumi, Juliane Junesch, Fumio Hosokawa, Kuniaki Nagayama, Yoshihiro Arai, Yoko Kayama