Particle analysis

Micro- and nanoparticles increasingly represent the basis of products used in daily life. Consequently, particle characterization plays an important role which requires special methods for analyzing the structure and chemical composition of these materials.

In the field of particle characterization, Fraunhofer ISC possesses a comprehensive range of highly specialized methods, processes and devices:



  • Transmission electron microscopy (TEM)
    [JEOL, JEM-2010]
    High resolution, measurements with cryostat, EDX analysis
  • Scanning electron microscopy (SEM)
    [ZEISS, SUPRA 25]
    High resolution, various detectors, EDX analysis
  • Environmental scanning electron microscopy (ESEM)
    [ZEISS, EVO LS10]
    Examination of moist and liquid probes in the low vacuum, cooling plate with humidity chamber, various detectors, EDX analysis
  • Confocal microscopy
    [LEICA, TCS SP8 X]
    White light laser (470 – 670 nm), diode laser (405 nm), STED laser (592 nm) and heating chamber with CO2


  • FT-IR spectrometer
    [Nicolet, MAGNA IR 760]
    Pellets, ATR unit, DRIFT unit, absorption, reflection and transmission measurements, 400 – 4000 cm-1, moist and solid samples
  • UV/Vis-NIR spectrometer
    [Shimadzu, UV-3100]
    Transmitted light, 190 – 3200 nm, cuvettes
    Transmitted light and reflection, 300 – 2200 nm, probes up to 20 cm2
  • Microplate reader
    [Tecan, INFINITE M1000 PRO]
    Determination of absorption, fluorescence and luminescence properties.
    Measurements in microtiter plates or cuvettes
  • NMR spectroscopy
    [Bruker, Avance DPX 400]
    Structural clarification and purity tests of organic compounds, measurable NMR cores:
    1H, 13C, 29Si, 31P, 19F

Particle Properties

  • Dynamic light scattering (DLS)
    [Malvern Instruments, Zetasizer Nano ZS]
    Particle size determination of nanoparticles and colloids (0.003 µm – 10 µm) in solution through dynamic light scattering.
  • Zeta potential
    [Malvern Instruments, Zetasizer Nano ZS]
    Measurement through electrophoretic light scattering.
  • N2 sorption
    [Quantachrome, Autosorb 3B]
    Determination of the specific surface (BET), pore volume and pore size distribution.

Materials Characterization

  • X-ray powder diffraction (XRD)
    [PANalytical, Empyrean]
    Structure and phase analysis of powders, thin layers, nano materials and solid materials, quantitative and qualitative evaluation
  • Thermogravimetry (TG/DTA resp. TG/DSC)
    ([Netzsch, STA 449C Jupiter (PtRh oven) + MS (Netzsch Aeolos QMS 403C) + FTIR (Bruker Tensor 27 with heated gas cell)]
    Qualitative and quantitative material analysis depending on temperature (up to 1650 °C), gas analysis through coupled mass spectrometer and FTIR spectrometer (with heated gas cell)
  • Dynamic heat calorimetry (DSC)
    [Netzsch, DSC 204 F1 Phoenix UV]
    Thermal analysis for the measurement of emitted or absorbed heat amount of one probe during heating, cooling or isothermal process.
  • Inductively coupled plasma – Optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES)
    [Varian, VISTA-PRO]
    Quantitative and qualitative analysis of various elements (radial torch)
  • Vibrating sample magnetometer


Fractionation Methods


  • Ultracentrifuge
    [Beckman Coulter, Optima L-80 XP]
    Particle separation through centrifugal force