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iTEM Software
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iTEM platform
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Software OverviewSoftware Overview
iTEM - the premier software platform for TEM
Key features
iTEM Platform
  • Microscope and camera control
  • User-friendly workflow
  • Auto tuning options for the TEM
  • Netcam (live image sharing via the internet)
  • Avi recorder / streaming functionality
  • Interactive measurement
  • Database
  • Reporting
  • Software extensions (see iTEM Solutions)
The field of transmission electron microscopy today has fully embraced digital technology. Modern microscopes are computer controlled. Image acquisition is typically performed using high resolution digital cameras instead of photographic plates. Furthermore, external automation possibilities have revolutionized the way people work at the transmission electron microscope and the entire world of the laboratory. In conjunction with image processing software, scenarios once thought impossible are now becoming reality. iTEM is the ideal platform for solving all these tasks. Additional solution-oriented product packages are also available, thus providing efficient extensions for the basic version of iTEM.
Description Specifications
iTEM is systematically oriented towards the requirements, needs and workflows of the transmission microscopy field. The software sets a new standard of excellence with enticingly simple, yet intuitive user operation, a range of functions that interact perfectly and a structure that is flexible and modular. iTEM controls connected devices, allowing complex processes to be automated. Ideally, the entire workflow, from first to last step, can all be conducted within iTEM. The software offers enormous latitude regarding image and data display. And iTEM is easily expandable via solution-oriented software extensions
Graphical User Interface
iTEM offers a wide range of possibilities for configuring the software according to the user’s own requirements. The entire user interface, including menu structure and button bars can be set up as the user pleases. Specific appearance settings and ranges of functions can be defined and selected upon starting up the software. iTEM redefines what image and data display is all about. ViewPorts are windows for viewing 1 or more images. They can be used totally independently of each other and offer a wide scope of ergonomic viewing and configuration options. Interpreting image contents is much easier with the multiple view features where various areas of the same image can be viewed at different zoom levels simultaneously. Synchronizing ViewPorts enables users to compare images onscreen. The Navigator ensures that even when viewing large area images at high zoom levels, users always know where they are.
Scale bars
iTEM has ample options for hiding/showing scale bars and converting scale bar units. This makes visually grasping the scale of objects within an image easy and fast
iTEM includes a comprehensive library of text, graphical and editing functions for labeling and highlighting images. Users can insert a company logo into an image, emphasize certain details with arrows or color highlighting, or insert text within an image – and all without altering the actual image content.
More extensive image information (XMI)
For each image and graph, more extensive information (XMI information) can be saved. This information documents the current microscope settings. These are read out automatically and appended to the internal image information. This data is available to the user to be used in the database and for report generation.
Image Acquisition
A mere click of a button and superior images are acquired using iTEM. The software ensures images are automatically focused, calibrated and rich in contrast. Users may modify images individually anytime they so desire. iTEM’s Digital Live Processing offers numerous real-time functions during image acquisition. These include shading correction, histograms, contrast enhancement, live overlay and of particular interest, the real-time FFT. A live histogram and over-exposure warning help to exploit the entire dynamic range of the camera without having the images saturated. Users can interactively optimize the live image by adjusting contrast and brightness through the live histogram. Other real-time image operations such as correction of camera artifacts, integration, averaging and automatic sharpness ensure premium image quality. Predefined live image and acquisition settings may be assigned to respective buttons and accessed at a single click of the mouse – handy with multiple cameras installed.
Microscope control
iTEM offers – depending on the type of microscope - software control of a wide range of microscope functions. These include the motor stage of the microscope, which is an essential requirement for automation processes. One example would be generating an overview image using the mia panorama-image function.
Exposure control
IntX (Intelligent eXposure) provides users with automatic exposure control. Premium quality acquisitions can be made at the click of a button without requiring extensive technical background knowledge. As needed, contrast and brightness may be manually adjusted within the live image.
The autofocus routine integrated with iTEM ensures sharply focused images. All computer-controlled TEMs are compatible for use with the autofocus feature, which is a perfect solution for routine tasks at the microscope as well as for use with automated applications.
Automatic calibration
The images acquired using iTEM are always calibrated correctly, a basic requirement for more advanced work with the images. Operations such as measuring and analyzing necessitate correct image calibration. Calibration data is automatically saved together with the image.
Avi recorder for digital video streaming
Integrated in iTEM is the AVI-Recorder. Since iTEM controls camera and microscope, the images can be transferred easily as a digital video stream using a start and stop button during live acquisition. The AVI-file can later be animated in iTEM directly or in other applications.
Image Processing
iTEM offers several options for post-acquisition image enhancement. These include a large list of filters, visualization tools and a special measurement user interface. The standard image processing filters for mages are integrated with iTEM as predefined or user-definable functions. In addition, iTEM offers many specially developed tools and filters which open up completely new image and data processing opportunities. For instance, the software offers special noise-suppression filters such as sigma and rank filters along with the DCE filter for improving local contrast enhancement. iTEM offers many options for post-acquisition image enhancement. These include adjusting contrast and brightness, gamma corrections, various options for equalizing intensity differences. Also included are functions like resolution modification, rotation, reflection, bit depth alteration and aligning two images simultaneously. Furthermore, after thresholds have been set, images can be binarized. In iTEM, Look-Up-Tables (LUTs) can be applied to images. These are for taking monochrome images and turning them into false-color images – in a precisely defined way. With 16-bit images, users can interactively define how they’re displayed. There is an image pocket calculator for making it easy to define even complex connections between images. It can be used for both arithmetical and logical connections.
Measurement interface
The measurement user interface of iTEM consists of the “Measurements” tab in the Image Manager, the “Measurements” button bar and the image document. The “Measurements” tab is where all settings are made - such as selecting measurement parameters, switching on online statistics and deleting measurements. All measurements conducted are shown in a clearly structured tree control. Measurement lines, measurement objects and measurement values appear in color in the image. There is a direct connection between measurement results and the image. The user-defined online statistics provide immediate information on the respective precision and dispersion of the measurement results. Measurement results and statistics can be shown in sheets. Data can be displayed as a diagram or via a graph. There are more extended processing routines available with the graph display. Measurement results and graphics can be automatically saved. And of course, sheets can be exported into MS Excel with just a click of the mouse.
iTEM includes a tools visualizing and animating three-dimensional data. The SliceViewer provides 3-D visualization of image stacks. Users can move about interactively within the 3-D visualization and then have the entire process animated from the desired perspective. The single view offers display of both the XYZ slice as well the individual component slices. Any view generated can also be directly copied into an image buffer. The SliceViewer‘s multiple view shows all four views within a single document. The XYZ view may also be animated. The respective projections are updated corresponding to the data selected in the XYZ slice. This view may also be simply copied into an image buffer.
iTEM provides the Graph window for displaying, processing, and evaluating one-dimensional data like EDS spectra. Numerous filters are available for preparing this data. The actual graphs can be labelled and displayed with a variety of views. Evaluation functions offer users more advanced data processing. Graph supports a variety of spectrum file formats and can display multiple spectra in a single window.
The database integrated with iTEM offers management of images and spectra, sheets, diagrams, reports and other files. Some of the attractive features this database has to offer include its tremendous flexibility ease of use and quick access to data. When setting up a new database, there‘s a helpful database assistant to guide users step by step. The entire database structure can be defined with minimum database knowledge. For much of the relevant data - such as image information and dates - there are predefined database fields that users can add their own fields to. The database assistant offers various templates to use as the basis for individual solutions (eg, for managing client orders or entire projects). This database was developed with network use in mind. Data can be saved on a central database server giving all users simultaneous access to all network data. The speed with which data can be accessed can be optimized using thumbnail-storage concepts. This ensures fast and efficient use of database content without using too much network capacity.
The integrated report generator makes report creation easy, fast and convenient. Users have the multifaceted range of functions offered by a layout program combined with the efficiency of word-processing software - all at their fingertips. The report generator in iTEM is template-based and offers a broad range of options for convenient and fast creation and management of reports and images. One decisive advantage is the time users save making reports - in particular, because of document automation. The integrated report generator has all the features usually available in separate software programs for creating layouts and processing text. Multi-page reports with different types of pages can be interactively or automatically created and filled with the relevant images and related data. Data can be dragged from the Image Manager or database or be taken directly from an acquisition.
The base version of iTEM is easily expandable via solution-oriented software extensions, referred to as Solutions for this very reason. Solutions expand the range of available functions and are finely tuned for specific tasks in the field of transmission electron microscopy.
Desktop Licences
For every iTEM first license, additional desktop licenses can be purchased which are identical to the first license, aside from the image acquisition capability. The advantage for the user is being able to work in exactly the same way as if at the microscope. The key difference being, the user is not at the microscope taking up costly time. And any data the user requires can be accessed via the networkable database.
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