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A new method for rapid preparation of transmission electron microscope (TEM) specimen grids from capillary-pore polycarbonate (PC) filters has been developed. This procedure permits reliable and complete dissolution of the PC filter medium to be achieved in 10 minutes. Using this procedure, specimen grids can be available for TEM examination less than 30 minutes after carbon coating of the filter. The procedure is a simple solution to the problems of residual filter polymer and cracking of the carbon film that many laboratories have experienced in preparation of TEM specimen grids from PC filters. A method by which all silicate minerals, including asbestos contamination, can be removed from unused PC filters, has also been developed.
asbestos analysis, polycarbonate, membrane filter, dissolution, transmission electron microscopy
Chatfield, Eric J.
President, Chatfield Technical Consulting Limited, Mississauga, Ontario