Our Innovations

Our passion is innovation. Working in partnership with academia and public/private institutions, Direct Electron continues to deliver a stream of innovations for TEM.

Our commitment to innovation delivers salient advantages to our customers:

  • COLLABORATION: We like to collaborate with our customers (either to generate new results or to develop new methods). We can work together with you to develop and implement new ideas and apply them to your specific research.
  • AHEAD OF THE CURVE: Our customers are confident that their camera represents the state-of-the-art technology for electron detection.
  • EARLY ACCESS: Our customers are the first to access and apply our new innovations in data collection techniques and image processing. In fact, many of our software innovations are free and open-source for our customers.

Stream of innovations

2004First to develop direct detection for TEM. [1]
2008First to demonstrate electron tomography with a direct detector. [2]
2008First to develop and demonstrate drift correction using the movies from a direct detector. [3]
2009First to develop and demonstrate single electron counting using a direct detection camera. [4]
2011First to demonstrate a cryo-EM 3D reconstruction using a direct detector. [5]
2012First to demonstrate cryo-EM 3D reconstructions reaching resolution beyond 3/4 Nyquist. [6]
2012First to attain subnanometer resolution 3D reconstructions using images collected at less than 40k× magnification.[7]
2012First to directly visualize beam-induced specimen movement of cryo specimens. [8]
2013First to demonstrate a near-atomic resolution cryo-EM 3D reconstruction using a direct detector. [9]
2013First to develop and use "damage compensation" (radiation damage weighted filtering of movie frames to improve SNR across a broad range of spatial frequencies). [10]
2014First to demonstrate large-format, high-speed in situ movie acquisition with a direct detector. [11]
2014First to demonstrate energy filtered TEM (EFTEM) with a direct detection camera and movie-mode. [12]
2014First to develop and offer an 8k × 8k direct detection camera. [13]


[1] Xuong NH, Milazzo AC, LeBlanc P, Duttweiler F, Bouwer J, Peltier S, Ellisman M, Denes P, Bieser F, Matis HS, Wieman H, Kleinfelder S. “First use of a high-sensitivity active pixel sensor array as a detector for electron microscopy.” Proceedings of the SPIE 5301, 242–249 (2004). View Publication.

[2] Jin L, Milazzo AC, Kleinfelder S, Li S, Leblanc P, Duttweiler F, Bouwer JC, Peltier ST, Ellisman MH, Xuong NH. “Applications of direct detection device in transmission electron microscopy.” Journal of Structural Biology 161, 352-358 (2008). View Publication.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Jin L. “Direct detection in transmission electron microscopy.” Dissertation, University of California San Diego (2009). View Publication.

[5] Milazzo AC, Cheng A, Moeller A, Lyumkis D, Jacovetty E, Polukas J, Ellisman MH, Xuong NH, Carragher B, Potter CS. “Initial evaluation of a direct detection device detector for single particle cryo-electron microscopy.” Journal of Structural Biology 176, 404-408 (2011). View Publication.

[6] Bammes BE, Rochat RH, Jakana J, Chen DH, Chiu W. “Direct electron detection yields cryo-EM reconstructions at resolutions beyond 3/4 Nyquist frequency.” Journal of Structural Biology 177, 589-601 (2012). View Publication.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Brilot AF, Chen JZ, Cheng A, Pan J, Harrison SC, Potter CS, Carragher B, Henderson R, Grigorieff N. “Beam-induced motion of vitrified specimen on holey carbon film.” Journal of Structural Biology 177, 630-637 (2012). View Publication.

[9] Campbell MG, Cheng A, Brilot AF, Moeller A, Lyumkis D, Veesler D, Pan J, Harrison SC, Potter CS, Carragher B, Grigorieff N. “Movies of ice-embedded particles enhance resolution in electron cryo-microscopy.” Structure 20, 1823-1828 (2012). View Publication.

[10] Bammes BE, Chen DH, Jin L, Bilhorn RB. “Visualizing and correcting dynamic specimen processes in TEM using a Direct Detection Device.” Microscopy & Microanalysis 19, 1320-1321 (2013). View Publication.

[11] Zeng Z, Liang WI, Liao HG, Xin HL, Chu YH, Zheng H. “Visualization of electrode-electrolyte interfaces in LiPF6/EC/DEC electrolyte for lithium ion batteries via in situ TEM.” Nano Letters 14, 1745-1750 (2014). View Publication.

[12] Ramachandra R, Bouwer JC, Mackey MR, Bushong E, Peltier ST, Xuong NH, Ellisman MH. “Improving signal to noise in labeled biological specimens using energy-filtered TEM of sections with a drift correction strategy and a direct detection device.” Microscopy & Microanalysis 20, 706-714 (2014). View Publication.

[13] The DE-64 Camera System was announced at the 2014 Gordon Research Conference in Three-Dimensional Electron Microscopy. View More Information.