Brewster Angle Microscope


Using a Brewster Angle Microscope (BAM), Langmuir films at a air-water interface can be imaged in real-time.

A Brewster Angle Microscope illuminates the water surface with p-polarized light under the Brewster angle. At ideal Brewster conditions, no light reflects off the interface. As soon as the there is a molecule film on the water surface, the Brewster conditions are lifted and the laser beam gets reflected with a certain intensity. As the measurement spot gets imaged with a microscope and a CCD camera, individual domains due to different orientations of the molecules can be followed in real-time.

Visualisation of monolayers
Monolayer imaging
Optional: motorized angle of incidence goniometer (KSV NIMA BAM)
Optional: precise software controlled height adjustment


The KSV NIMA BAM provides completely undistorted images unlike other BAMs. A precise motorized vertical lift allows fine positioning to focus the water surface. An active isolation system is integrated to eliminate disturbing environmental vibration from air conditioning, traffic etc.

A high performance camera and dedicated calibration algorithms allow quantitative measurements of reflectivity for monitoring adsorption kinetics or thickness variation. The BAM is equipped with a motorized analyzer to visualize optical anisotropy due to long-range molecular orientation order in monolayers.

A Langmuir trough can be used together with the BAM for control over the monolayer packing density and recording of surface pressure. The compatible KSV NIMA Langmuir and Langmuir-Blodgett Deposition Trough Large are the recommended systems.


The MicroBAM and Stand-Alone MicroBAM are easy-to-use, entry level instruments for non-invasive imaging of mono-molecular layers at the air-water interface. The excellent image quality and good lateral resolution make them ideal instruments for the visualization of morphological film parameters (e.g. compressed film homogeneity, domain size, shape and packing). Real-time observation and recording of film structure enables dynamic activity to be captured.

Both the MicroBAM and Stand-Alone MicroBAM can be used with most KSV NIMA Langmuir and Langmuir-Blodgett Troughs for automatic image measurements as a function of time or surface pressure. Both instruments are easy to set up with the measurement head height adjustment either motorized, MicroBAM, or manual, Stand-Alone MicroBAM. Both instruments have a safety key interlock for the BAM laser.

The KSV NIMA Stand-Alone MicroBAM can also be used with most Langmuir and Langmuir-Blodgett troughs from other manufacturers as well as freestanding vessels. The KSV NIMA Stand-Alone MicroBAM connects directly to the computer via USB making it remarkably easy to set up and use.


  • The best resolution (2 µm) and image quality in the field of Brewster Angle Microscopy and provides real-time and fully focused sample visualization at 20-35 fps

  • Easy integration with KSV NIMA L & LB Trough Large

  • Advanced image analysis and processing with the ability to simply select domains to get their

  • Adjustable incident angle (52-57°) enabling measurements with dielectric solid substrates like glass or quartz

  • Imaging of anisotropic layers with the motorized analyzer

  • On-line automatic subtraction of a constant background image

  • Possible desktop remote control for support purposes


  • Appropriate resolution (12 µm) for most applications

  • Capture and save still images and real-time video footage of monolayers

  • Compact design, small footprint

  • Simple, intuitive operation

  • Imaging and control software included

  • Operates with a PC or Notebook (Windows XP to Win 7)

  • Compatible with most Langmuir troughs and Langmuir-Blodgett troughs

  • Can be used as a stand-alone instrument

Interfacial reactions


Request further information
Product Manager - Ellipsometry & Surface Science
+49 6151 8806-68
Fax: +49 6151 8806968

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