Auger Electron Spectroscopy (AES) Equipment

Auger Electron Spectroscopy (AES or Auger)

1. Instrument

Scanning Auger Microprobe (AES), Model PHI-590, Physical Electronics (USA) for Surface Analysis and Depth Profiling.

Minimum electron beam diameter 0.32 m m and 10 keV primary excitation energy.

This machine determines the chemical composition of surfaces, and is not limited to a single point but also to multiple points on the surface sample which can be chosen by the operator using the microscope imaging capability of the scanning system and also “mapping” the sample surface for chemical elements. A second important versatility of this system is the ion-Gun which makes available a Depth Profiling capability providing the chemical composition of the samples as a function of depth. Giving, not only information about surface chemical composition but also in depth up to bulk.

The scanning Auger system satisfies the needs of surface, near surface and interface characterization of broad spectrum of materials analysis: semiconductors, metals, composites and insulators (in some cases).

2. Sample information

  • The area of interest must either be an exposed area or within about a micron of the surface to allow in-situ ion beam sputter-etching. Thus, sample preparation may involve chemical etching, reactive ion etching, polishing or ion milling to remove thick layers over the region of interest.
  • The maximum sample size that can be accommodated: less than 1´ 1 cm.
  • The minimum sample size that can be accommodated in the sample holder is limited by handling considerations.
  • The minimum area analyzed is determined by the electron beam diameter, roughly ³ 0.5 m m., at a minimum current that will allow enough Auger transitions to be created and detected by the analyzer and the electronic circuitry. Larger areas can be analyzed by defocusing the electron beam or by rastering the beam over a larger area.
  • The sample must be UHV vacuum compatible.
  • Conductive samples can be analyzed while non-conductive samples can often be analyzed as well

Auger Electron Spectroscopy (AES) Technique

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