A scanning electron microscope (SEM) is a type of electron microscope that produces images of a sample by scanning over it with a high energy focused beam of electrons. The electrons interact with electrons in the sample, producing secondary electrons, back-scattered electrons, and characteristic X-rays that can be detected and that contain information about the sample’s surface topography and composition. The electron beam is generally scanned in a raster scan pattern, and the beam’s position is combined with the detected signal to produce an image.
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