Sample Preparation Guide
SIMS samples need to be flat and well polished. Relief must be at an absolute minimum.  They can be thin sections or grain mounts, but they must fit within the 1 inch (2.5 cm) diameter SIMS sample holders. Sample height should be less than 5 mm and a maximum of 12 mm. We routinely uses Buehler Epothin® or EpoxiCure® epoxy resins and hardeners to make sample mounts.  Analysis areas or grains need to be near the center of the thin-section or grain mount. Samples will be carbon or gold coated and once in the SIMS, they will only be visible by reflected light.  Therefore, detailed  sample maps at different scales are often required  (e.g., back-scattered electron images, transmitted light photomicrographs). Please see examples of sample mounts below or refer to papers in:

Fayek, M., 2009, Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry in the Earth and Planetary Sciences: Gleaning the Big Picture from a Small Spot. Mineralogical Association of Canada, v. 41, 150 p.