What's New

Posted 6-12-2017


This position is listed at https://wit.twc.state.tx.us/WORKINTEXAS/wtx?u=1497283727587&pageid=EM_JP_JOB_DETAILS&id=8544163
Instructions for Applicants: Please submit a resume/CV and cover letter to joeashworth@tamu edu to apply.

The Microscopy and Imaging Center (MIC) at Texas A&M University is seeking to hire a staff research scientist. The new hire will provide digital image analysis and processing services and provide service and user training in electron and light microscopy imaging, sample preparation, and in situ elemental/molecular analyses of biological and soft matter material science samples.

Required Education and Experience:
A doctoral degree in a life science related field plus six years of experience in electron microscopy.

Preferred Education and Experience:
Experience with biological sample preparation and imaging in TEM/cryo-TEM. Experience in the use of FEI Tecnai F20 cryo-TEM  and JEOL 1200Ex  TEM or similar microscopes is highly preferred. Experience in performing research.

Required Special Knowledge, Skills, or Abilities:
Working knowledge of common molecular and biology techniques,  biochemical and cell based assays is highly preferred. Ability to learn new techniques, ability to follow existing protocols, ability to develop novel protocols. Good communication and people skills and ability to interact with various users/collaborators

Overview of job duties:

TEM Service - Prepare samples for TEM/cryo-TEM, take and analyze images for facility users. Work with users on the design, sample preparation, imaging and image analysis of TEM/cryo-TEM experiments. Prepare biological specimens using chemical fixation techniques. Prepare specimens using cryo-techniques, such as plunge freezing, high pressure freezing and freeze substitution, cryo-ultramicrotomy. Perform TEM imaging on  a standard TEM (JEOL 1200Ex) and a cryo-TEM (FEI Tecnai F20).Reconstruct TEM data sets (tomograms, single particle analysis). Perform basic image processing and analysis, such as averaging, filtering, alignment, quantitative analysis and measurement

User training - train users in sample preparation and imaging techniques for transmission electron and cryo-electron microscopy. Provide advanced level instructions and work direction to facility users in biological/soft matter specimen preparation methods used in the MIC, including training in the operation of  EM ICE High Pressure Freezer, EM AFS2 Freeze substitution instrument, Ultramicrotome/cryo-ultramicrotome, laboratory microwave processor. Train facility users in the independent operation of the TEM and cryo-TEM. Train users in appropriate use of data analysis software and methods

Equipment and Lab Management. Acquire and maintain basic stocks of reagents and supplies for TEM/cryo-TEM sample preparation, such as fixation and contrasting agents, dehydration reagents, embedding resins, EM grids. Perform general upkeep of designated sample preparation areas in the laboratory. Perform basic adjustment/alignment/calibration and setup of the TEMs and supporting equipment. Report maintenance issues with equipment, liaise with manufacturers of the sample preparation equipment with regard to repair and maintenance

Engagement in Research and Proposal Writing. It is the expectation of the MIC and other core facilities who employee research scientists for them to be engaged in research and proposal writing individually and in collaboration with other researchers and faculty.


Posted 2-13-2017 

In last several months, several instrument upgrades were completed in the MIC.

  • FEI Tecnai ST: system software upgrade, new Oxford EDS 
  • FEI Quanta FESEM: new Oxford EBSD detector
  • Olympus FV1000 confocal microscope: two new highly sensitive GaAsP detectors were installed. Environmental enclosure with temperature, humuidity and CO2 control coming soon
  • High-speed sCMOS camera for low-ligh, high speed fluorescence imaging  
  • New sample preparation equipment: Leica High Pressure Freezer, Freeze substitution apparatus, cryo-ultramicrotome and  anew knife maker. The MIC will offer user training once the equipment is installed.



Posted 11-11-2016

Presentation: TEM Sample preparation instruments

Thursday, Novembner 17th,

10:00-11:30AM, ILSB Room 1141

As part of the MIC upgrades and improvements funded by the TAMU Research Development Fund, our facility will be acquiring equipment for TEM and cryo-TEM preparation of biological and other soft-matter samples.

Leica Microsystems representatives and application specialists will be  giving a short presentation  on the instrument applications and what kind of results you will expect from each instrument. They will be able to answer any technical questions and could readily help evaluate what is really needed for YOUR research.  The presentation will include the EM ICE High Pressure Freezer, UC7/FC7 ultramicrotome and a cryo-sectioning chamber, KMR3 glass knifemaker, Diamond knives and the ASF2 Automatic Freeze substitution apparatus. 

You are invited to attend the presentation and to discuss possible accessories and options that are most important for your sample preparation workflow.

RSVP to Emily Pfeiffer (emilypfeiffer@tamu.edu).

 Links to more information about the instruments are below:

EM ICE: http://www.leica-microsystems.com/products/sample-preparation-for-electron-microscopy/industrial-materials/cryo-preparation/details/product/leica-em-ice/

EM AFS http://www.leica-microsystems.com/products/sample-preparation-for-electron-microscopy/cryo-preparation-systems/details/product/leica-em-afs2/

UC7/FC7, KMR3: http://www.leica-microsystems.com/products/sample-preparation-for-electron-microscopy/ultramicrotomes-cryo-ultramicrotomes/




New Ar ion laser was installed on the Olympus confocal microscope.



The Olympus FV1000 confocal microscope has been  upgraded to ver. 4.2 control software and a 64-bit Windowes 7 computer. Improvement should be noticeable in processing large files and in 3D rendering speed.