Cryo-ultramicrotomy is a preparation technique which mostly is applied for the preparation of thin slices of material. Sometimes also light and/or SEM specimens are made with the microtomy technique.
The combination Leica Ultracut UCT and Leica EM FCS allows low temperature sectioning of biological and industrial samples at temperatures as low as -185°C.
Glass or diamond blades are used during the specimen slicing at room temperature or lower temperatures (cryo-option).
In our institute mostly diamond knives are used for the preparation of TEM electron transparent sections (around 100 nm thick) of solid materials such as (conductive) polymers, embedded powders, metalized paper/textile,...
The cryo-ultramicrotome is used as an alternative to other TEM specimen preparation techniques such as electropolishing or ion milling.