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Proceedings Paper

Characterization of thin films by surface mass spectrometry
Author(s): Hubert Gnaser
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Paper Abstract

Secondary-ion mass spectrometry and secondary-neutral mass spectrometry use the atoms and molecules sputtered from the surface of a solid by energetic-ion impact to derive information on the elemental composition at the surface and, in conjunction with continuous sample erosion, in thin films. This contribution summarizes the basic principles of these techniques. Selected examples for the characterization of thin films and surfaces from various technologically important areas are presented, emphasizing aspects of quantification, detection sensitivity, and spatially resolved analyses. Specifically, reliable quantification schemes utilizing either post-ionized neutral species or specific molecular ions are highlighted; furthermore, it is shown that these mass spectrometric techniques enable the sensitive detection of essentially all elements at very low concentration levels, reaching even into the sub-parts-per- billion range in favorable cases. Finally, aspects of spatially resolved analyses are discussed, covering depth profiling, surface imaging and a fully 3D characterization of solids. It is exemplified that by using suitable primary- ion bombardment conditions, a lateral resolution of less than 100 nm and an in-depth resolution of a few nm can be achieved in thin-film analyses.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 November 2000
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4086, Fourth International Conference on Thin Film Physics and Applications, (29 November 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.408398
Show Author Affiliations
Hubert Gnaser, Univ. Kaiserslautern (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4086:
Fourth International Conference on Thin Film Physics and Applications

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