Luigi Raspolini

Luigi Raspolini is an application engineer for the Thermo Scientific Phenom Desktop SEM product range at Thermo Fisher Scientific. Luigi is constantly looking for new approaches to materials characterization, surface roughness measurements, and composition analysis. He is passionate about improving user experiences and demonstrating the best way to image every kind of sample.

How engineers and researchers can boost polymers properties with SEM

By Luigi Raspolini - February 7, 2019

Polymers have many uses and applications: engineered combinations of monomers produce a nearly infinite number of molecules with different properties, which are determined by the chemical composition and structure of the molecule. The form of the molecule has a big influence on how the polymer will behave when exposed to different external forces. In this blog, you’ll find practical examples of how Scanning Electron Microscopes (SEMs) can provide unexpected results.

Polymers have many uses and applications: engineered combinations of monomers produce a nearly infinite number of molecules with different properties, which are determined by the chemical composition and structure of the molecule. The form of the molecule has a big influence on how the polymer will behave when exposed to different external forces. In this blog, you’ll find practical examples of how Scanning Electron Microscopes (SEMs) can provide unexpected results.

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Why the plastics industry relies heavily on microscopy analysis

By Luigi Raspolini - January 24, 2019

Ever since oil became fundamental to industry, scientists and engineers from all around the world have carried out more and more research into how different organic molecules can be combined in certain patterns to obtain new materials with amazing properties. Commonly called plastics, they are known to the scientific community as polymers — chemical compounds with a highly-engineered chemical structure and composition. The analysis of these compounds is crucial in helping to improve polymer production processes. This article discusses how electron microscopy can provide the analysis that polymer developers need to improve product quality significantly.

Ever since oil became fundamental to industry, scientists and engineers from all around the world have carried out more and more research into how different organic molecules can be combined in certain patterns to obtain new materials with amazing properties. Commonly called plastics, they are known to the scientific community as polymers — chemical compounds with a highly-engineered chemical structure and composition. The analysis of these compounds is crucial in helping to improve polymer production processes. This article discusses how electron microscopy can provide the analysis that polymer developers need to improve product quality significantly.

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The revolution in asbestos analysis

By Luigi Raspolini - November 30, 2018

The detection of asbestos fibers is a complex and time-consuming operation, requiring the use of electron microscopes and highly trained operators. This results in high costs for the analysis and a slow throughput. What if the microscope could support the operator with an automated fiber detection routine and cut the time (and cost) required for each analysis? Find out how in this blog.

The detection of asbestos fibers is a complex and time-consuming operation, requiring the use of electron microscopes and highly trained operators. This results in high costs for the analysis and a slow throughput. What if the microscope could support the operator with an automated fiber detection routine and cut the time (and cost) required for each analysis? Find out how in this blog.

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Using a SEM in packaging material development and analysis

By Luigi Raspolini - October 25, 2018

Nowadays, the packaging industry is one of the fastest growing in terms of technology advancement and employing the latest available scientific developments. The reason lies in the greater demand for products and the upscale of shipments from regional transport to worldwide delivery. To ensure that the technologies are integrated in the right way, and to verify the quality of such introductions, more advanced inspection tools are required and scanning electron microscopes (SEM) play an increasingly important role in the material development. This blog will highlight some of the most common uses of electron microscopy within this field of application.

Nowadays, the packaging industry is one of the fastest growing in terms of technology advancement and employing the latest available scientific developments. The reason lies in the greater demand for products and the upscale of shipments from regional transport to worldwide delivery. To ensure that the technologies are integrated in the right way, and to verify the quality of such introductions, more advanced inspection tools are required and scanning electron microscopes (SEM) play an increasingly important role in the material development. This blog will highlight some of the most common uses of electron microscopy within this field of application.

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Topics: R&D

Why do your materials break? Tensile testing: inspecting the breaking mechanisms of materials with SEM

By Luigi Raspolini - September 27, 2018

Tensile testing is a commonly-used analysis that provides information on the resilience of an object and how much resistance it can offer to traction or compression. Such tests can be performed on a large variety of materials and provide useful information to speculate on the behavior of a material when it undergoes a stress. The main purpose of the tensile test is to evaluate relevant parameters (like the Young's modulus, for example) or to study the how shear stress affects the material. This allows researchers to create models and design better materials. But how can you see what is happening? A scanning electron microscope (SEM) with tensile testing capabilities can provide you with that information.

Tensile testing is a commonly-used analysis that provides information on the resilience of an object and how much resistance it can offer to traction or compression. Such tests can be performed on a large variety of materials and provide useful information to speculate on the behavior of a material when it undergoes a stress. The main purpose of the tensile test is to evaluate relevant parameters (like the Young's modulus, for example) or to study the how shear stress affects the material. This allows researchers to create models and design better materials. But how can you see what is happening? A scanning electron microscope (SEM) with tensile testing capabilities can provide you with that information.

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SEM technology: the role of the electron beam voltage in electron microscopy analysis

By Luigi Raspolini - July 6, 2018

When conducting electron microscopy (EM) analysis, there are a few important parameters that must be taken into account to produce the best possible results, and to image the feature of interest. One of the crucial roles is played by the voltage (or tension) applied to the source electrodes to generate the electron beam. Historically, the trend has always been to increase the voltage to improve the resolution of the system.

It is only in recent years that scanning electron microscope (SEM) producers have started to focus on improving the resolution at lower voltages. A major role in this has been the expanding field of application of EM to the life sciences - especially after the introduction of the Nobel prize-winning cryo-SEM technique. This blog will focus on the effects of the voltage on the results of electron microscopy analysis.


When conducting electron microscopy (EM) analysis, there are a few important parameters that must be taken into account to produce the best possible results, and to image the feature of interest. One of the crucial roles is played by the voltage (or tension) applied to the source electrodes to generate the electron beam. Historically, the trend has always been to increase the voltage to improve the resolution of the system.

It is only in recent years that scanning electron microscope (SEM) producers have started to focus on improving the resolution at lower voltages. A major role in this has been the expanding field of application of EM to the life sciences - especially after the introduction of the Nobel prize-winning cryo-SEM technique. This blog will focus on the effects of the voltage on the results of electron microscopy analysis.


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Battery research with a SEM: inspecting one layer at a time

By Luigi Raspolini - May 31, 2018

Batteries revolutionized the world of electronics by enabling us to carry an energy reserve in our pockets. Miniaturization and efficiency are the two key words when it comes to new developments in this field, impacting with the battery materials’ properties and stretching their limits. Let’s take a look at how researchers characterize materials and gather relevant information about batteries using scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

Batteries revolutionized the world of electronics by enabling us to carry an energy reserve in our pockets. Miniaturization and efficiency are the two key words when it comes to new developments in this field, impacting with the battery materials’ properties and stretching their limits. Let’s take a look at how researchers characterize materials and gather relevant information about batteries using scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

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Effective asbestos detection with a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)

By Luigi Raspolini - May 10, 2018

Resistance to fire, sound absorption, tensile strength and low price caused a boost in asbestos mining activities at the beginning of 19th century.

Already used in the production of asphalt, brake pads, electrical insulators, fireproof suits, technical fabrics and other everyday products, asbestos started its golden century when the Austrian engineer Ludwig Hatschek invented the first asbestos-cement, often mistakenly referred to as Eternit.

The material properties, particularly its lightness and resilience, started a real revolution in the construction engineering and asbestos-cements factories, which immediately emerged all over the world.

Resistance to fire, sound absorption, tensile strength and low price caused a boost in asbestos mining activities at the beginning of 19th century.

Already used in the production of asphalt, brake pads, electrical insulators, fireproof suits, technical fabrics and other everyday products, asbestos started its golden century when the Austrian engineer Ludwig Hatschek invented the first asbestos-cement, often mistakenly referred to as Eternit.

The material properties, particularly its lightness and resilience, started a real revolution in the construction engineering and asbestos-cements factories, which immediately emerged all over the world.

Read more

Microscopy resolution resolved! A simple explanation for an often misunderstood term

By Luigi Raspolini - March 24, 2017

There are different definitions of resolution and they depend on what kind of application you are working on. This blog's intent is to highlight and clarify the differences between the resolution of a LCD screen and the idea of resolution in microscopy.

There are different definitions of resolution and they depend on what kind of application you are working on. This blog's intent is to highlight and clarify the differences between the resolution of a LCD screen and the idea of resolution in microscopy.

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Magnification in scanning electron microscopes (SEM): is it the key to analyse your samples?

By Luigi Raspolini - March 16, 2017

Magnification is a very simple concept, but it sometimes can create confusion because of its own definition. The aim of this blog is to clarify magnification in scanning electron microscopes (SEM) and focus on other parameters which can describe better how big an object is represented.

Magnification is a very simple concept, but it sometimes can create confusion because of its own definition. The aim of this blog is to clarify magnification in scanning electron microscopes (SEM) and focus on other parameters which can describe better how big an object is represented.

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