Some important practical issues for the collection and manipulation of Electron Backscatter Diffraction (EBSD) data from geological samples

Angela Halfpenny

Due to modern advances in micro-analytical facilities, techniques such as electron backscatter diffraction are becoming the standard tool for performing crystallographic orientation analysis. This has lead to a surge in the numbers of investigations using electron backscatter diffraction analyses. Electron backscatter diffraction allows the systematic measurement of the full crystallographic orientation of grains as small as sub-micron in size in rock-forming minerals as well as other crystalline materials such as metals and ceramics. Performance of electron backscatter diffraction requires samples to be specially prepared and correctly orientated to suit the aims of the research, such as understanding the deformation kinematics of the sample. This paper aims to outline the methodology necessary to go from orientated hand specimen or experimental laboratory sample through to collection of electron backscatter diffraction data. Practical information often omitted from EBSD publications will be presented such as detailed descriptions of sample preparation and discussion about how to achieve good quality results. Guidelines are restricted mainly to the use of Oxford Instruments HKL Channel 5 software and do not cover other analysis hardware and software. However, parts of the paper such as sample preparation and orientation guidelines will be useful to anyone performing EBSD analysis.