The electron optical limits of performance of single-polepiece magnetic electron lenses
The thesis is concerned with the electron properties of single-polepiece magnetic electron lenses especially under conditions of extreme polepiece saturation. The electron optical properties are first analysed under conditions of high polepiece permeability. From this analysis, a general idea can be obtained of the important parameters that affect ultimate lens performance. In addition, useful information is obtained concerning the design of improved lenses operating under conditions of extreme polepiece saturation, for example at flux densities of the order of 10 Tesla. It is shown that in a single-polepiece lens , the position and shape of the lens exciting coil plays an important role. In particular, the maximum permissible current density in the windings,rather than the properties of the iron, can set a limit to lens performance. This factor was therefore investigated in some detail. The axial field distribution of a single-polepiece lens, unlike that of a conventional lens, is highly asymmetrical. There are therefore two possible physical arrangements of the lens with respect to the incoming electron beam. In general these two orientations will result in different aberration coefficients. This feature has also been investigated in some detail. Single-pole piece lenses are thus considerably more complicated electron- optically than conventional double polepiece lenses. In particular, the absence of the usual second polepiece causes most of the axial magnetic flux density distribution to lie outside the body of the lens. This can have many advantages in electron microscopy but it creates problems in calculating the magnetic field distribution. In particular, presently available computer programs are liable to be considerably in error when applied to such structures. It was therefore necessary to find independent ways of checking the field calculations. Furthermore, if the polepiece is allowed to saturate, much more calculation is involved since the field distribution becomes a non-linear function of the lens excitation. In searching for optimum lens designs, care was therefore taken to ensure that the coil was placed in the optimum position. If this condition is satisfied there seems to be no theoretical limit to the maximum flux density that can be attained at the polepiece tip. However , under iron saturation condition, some broadening of the axial field distribution will take place, thereby changing the lens aberrations . Extensive calculations were therefore made to find the minimum spherical and chromatic aberration coefficients . The focal properties of such lens designs are presented and compared with the best conventional double-polepiece lenses presently available.