Development and application of electron microscopy techniques for structural analytical characterization of material. This includes conventional scanning and transmission electron microscopy (TEM), EDS and EELS spectroscopy, applied to materials. In particular, electron beam diffraction techniques are applied the study of strain fields in crystals. Recent activity includes the generation and study of vortex and Bessel beams by means of holographic methods and the development of in-situ studies in the TEM.
Roberto Balboni is Researcher at the Bologna site of CNR-IMM Institute. He graduated in Physics at the University of Bologna in 1988 and his research activity has been devoted to the characterization of materials mainly using electron microscopy methods, but also by means of X-rays diffraction. He was at Department of Physics of the University of Modena until 1993, where he used scanning and transmission electron microscopy and microanalysis to characterize semiconductor materials and devices. In 1984 he moved to CNR-IMM (formerly LAMEL Institute) where, in addition to electron microscopy, he also worked on X-ray diffraction characterization and modeling in semiconductor and on electromigration issues in metal interconnects. At CNR-IMM he developed the use of convergent beam diffraction analysis to study strain fields at the nanoscale in crystalline materials, by setting up both the experimental procedure and the theoretical modeling and computer code. He participated to the project STREAM (FP5), funded by the EC and coordinated by CNR-IMM Bologna, to set up the procedure and codes for strain analysis in semiconductor structures and devices.
He was responsible for the CNR participation in the project ANNA (FP6), funded by the EC.
He authored more than 80 papers in international journals presented his work on more than 70 international conferences.
He was in the Scientific committees of several international conferences on Microscopy.
He was Director of five editions of the TEM School in Materials Science in Bologna from 2008 to 2016.
He is presently President of the Italian Society for Microscopical Sciences.