The discovery of the nanotube in 1991 by high resolution electron microscopy (HREM), following closely on the discovery of fullerenes, has initiated a new field of science known as nanoscience. (In fact the fullerene buckyball itself was first observed in 1980, by HREM.) While nanoscience now spans many disciplines, from molecular biology to quantum computing, for all of them, the HREM technique has become the indispensable tool for analyzing the atomic structure of individual bulk nanostructural elements. However this method has long been the technique of choice whenever questions of microstructural characterization arise in materials science.

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DOI: 10.1016/S1369-7021(02)05328-2