The MIAMI (Microscopes and Ion Accelerators for Materials Investigation) facilities are a unique group of instruments combining ion irradiation with transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Constructed with funding from the UK’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), it is the only such facility in the UK and one of only two in Europe, the other being the JANNuS laboratory at Orsay in France.
MIAMI-1, installed at the University of Huddersfield in 2011, can irradiate samples in situ with inert gas ions in the energy range 2–100 keV. The brand new MIAMI-2 facility is capable of irradiating samples in situ with up to 350 keV ions whilst simultaneously irradiating with up to 20 keV inert gas ions.
These systems offer unique opportunities for investigations into the effects of energetic particles on materials as it allows the observation and recording of dynamic processes occurring under ion irradiation rather than just the recording of end states. In addition, it permits control of the temperature of specimens under observation, enabling materials to be studied at temperatures from –173 to 1300°C.