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  1. Abstract

    Spatially resolved in situ transmission electron microscopy (TEM), equipped with direct electron detection systems, is a suitable technique to record information about the atom-scale dynamics with millisecond temporal resolution from materials. However, characterizing dynamics or fluxional behavior requires processing short time exposure images which usually have severely degraded signal-to-noise ratios. The poor signal-to-noise associated with high temporal resolution makes it challenging to determine the position and intensity of atomic columns in materials undergoing structural dynamics. To address this challenge, we propose a noise-robust, processing approach based on blob detection, which has been previously established for identifying objects in images in the community of computer vision. In particular, a blob detection algorithm has been tailored to deal with noisy TEM image series from nanoparticle systems. In the presence of high noise content, our blob detection approach is demonstrated to outperform the results of other algorithms, enabling the determination of atomic column position and its intensity with a higher degree of precision.

  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 1, 2023
  3. Deep convolutional neural networks (CNNs) for image denoising are usually trained on large datasets. These models achieve the current state of the art, but they have difficulties generalizing when applied to data that deviate from the training distribution. Recent work has shown that it is possible to train denoisers on a single noisy image. These models adapt to the features of the test image, but their performance is limited by the small amount of information used to train them. Here we propose "GainTuning", in which CNN models pre-trained on large datasets are adaptively and selectively adjusted for individual test images. To avoid overfitting, GainTuning optimizes a single multiplicative scaling parameter (the "Gain") of each channel in the convolutional layers of the CNN. We show that GainTuning improves state-of-the-art CNNs on standard image-denoising benchmarks, boosting their denoising performance on nearly every image in a held-out test set. These adaptive improvements are even more substantial for test images differing systematically from the training data, either in noise level or image type. We illustrate the potential of adaptive denoising in a scientific application, in which a CNN is trained on synthetic data, and tested on real transmission-electron-microscope images. In contrast to the existingmore »methodology, GainTuning is able to faithfully reconstruct the structure of catalytic nanoparticles from these data at extremely low signal-to-noise ratios.« less
  4. null (Ed.)
    A deep convolutional neural network has been developed to denoise atomic-resolution transmission electron microscope image datasets of nanoparticles acquired using direct electron counting detectors, for applications where the image signal is severely limited by shot noise. The network was applied to a model system of CeO 2 -supported Pt nanoparticles. We leverage multislice image simulations to generate a large and flexible dataset for training the network. The proposed network outperforms state-of-the-art denoising methods on both simulated and experimental test data. Factors contributing to the performance are identified, including (a) the geometry of the images used during training and (b) the size of the network's receptive field. Through a gradient-based analysis, we investigate the mechanisms learned by the network to denoise experimental images. This shows that the network exploits both extended and local information in the noisy measurements, for example, by adapting its filtering approach when it encounters atomic-level defects at the nanoparticle surface. Extensive analysis has been done to characterize the network's ability to correctly predict the exact atomic structure at the nanoparticle surface. Finally, we develop an approach based on the log-likelihood ratio test that provides a quantitative measure of the agreement between the noisy observation and the atomic-levelmore »structure in the network-denoised image.« less