The Kimball Physics Lanthanum Hexaboride Cathode (LaB6) is a high performance, resistively heated, thermionic electron source. It is currently employed in many brightness-limited electron optical systems: SEM’s, TEM’s, probes, electron lithography systems, and more.
It is based on a well-proven heater structure, which has recently been further refined with features that include improved reliability of the heater circuit, improved stability of the LaB6 crystal, and less exposure of LaB6 to reduce Wehnelt aperture contamination.
With the ES-423 LaB6 crystal in Conical with Microflat (ES-423E) and Guard Ring (ES-423E GR) configurations, lifetimes in excess of 6 months of continuous operation are regularly achieved in commercial SEM’s and TEM’s with suitable gun vacuum. The LaB6 cathodes are available with numerous microscope base configurations.
The Lanthanum Hexaboride (LaB6) cathode / emitters are available in various sizes and configurations:
To LEARN MORE about our cathodes / electron emitters, please refer to our Kimball Physics Cathode Summary document (PDF).