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Dimple Grinder II

The Gatan Dimple Grinder II is a mechanical pre-thinning system for TEM. Save time with fast, reliable, even pre-thinning, to thin your sample to near electron transparency and significantly reduce ion milling time.


Save time on ion milling

Ensures even thinning

Fast, reliable, mechanical milling.

Preserve large transparent areas

With a supporting rim for strength.

Less than <3 μm

Final thickness.


  • Large transparent areas, with a variety of large and flat wheels.
  • Stronger specimens: Leaves a thick supporting rim to protect and strengthen specimens, with grinding wheels for fragile samples.
  • Direct preparation of TEM specimens: Final thickness of <3 μm – thin enough for examination in intermediate voltage TEMs.
  • Accurate depth and thickness control: Define the stop point and monitor dimple depth in real-time, with 1 µm accuracy.
  • Micro-positioning: Orthogonal and intersect axes for accurate positioning.

Advantages of Mechanical Pre-Thinning

Mechanical grinding techniques are the fastest way of thinning samples for TEM. The Gatan Dimple Grinder II thins samples quickly, with minimal damage. Quickly produce a large area for final processing with slower, chemical methods.

For example, a 100 μm thick, 3mm diameter specimen can be reduced to a few microns in the central region, in just 20 minutes for silicon and 100 minutes for sapphire. Final chemical or particle beam thinning can then be performed to produce large electron transparent areas, ready for TEM.

Certain materials that are resistant to mechanical damage (eg silicon, ceramics and hard materials) can be fully prepared with the Dimple Grinder, by reducing the polishing speed and using a special polishing wheel for the final few microns.


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