Electron Backscatter Diffraction (EBSD)

Electron Backscatter Diffraction (EBSD) is a technique that is uniquely suited to characterize crystallographic properties of your samples. Proprieties such as: grain size, grain shape, grain orientation, grain boundary misorientation, spatial distribution of phases, local deformation and texture can all be characterized by this technique.

EBSD Analysis is a great complement to the excellent capabilities of our X-ray diffraction (XRD) services. While our XRD tools and staff can provide unparalleled information on phase ID, nanocrystalline grain size, thin film thickness and textures; the new capabilities available by EBSD will provide spatial information, help to visualize the microstructure and add to a complete description of your crystalline samples.

Ideal Uses of EBSD

  • Visualization of microstructure with spatial coordinates
  • Characterization of texture in exact locations such as near welds or on semiconductor bond pads
  • Characterization of grain size and texture as it related to finish quality in sheet steel and Al
  • Measurement of large grains, without the error associated with LM
  • Characterization of special grain boundaries, such as CSL’s and twins
  • Measurement of grain misorientation
  • Characterization of deformation by examination of intragrain misorientation and grain aspect ratio
  • Characterization of epitaxially grown thin films
  • Characterization of in-depth texture, by examining cross sections


  • Direct measurement of grain size
  • Able to uniquely characterize individual grain boundary angles
  • Can map phase distribution of some materials
  • Can map grains sizes from several 10s of nm to several 10s of mm


  • Cannot measure amorphous materials
  • Moderate ability to differentiate different phases

EBSD Technical Specifications

  • Signal Detected: Diffracted electrons
  • Elements Detected: All elements, assuming they are present in a crystalline matrix
  • Detection Limits: Grain size >80 nm
  • Quantitative analysis: Grain size and related measurements: ~10%

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