PORTABLE ON-LINE X-RAY DIFFRACTION SYSTEM

Period of Performance: 01/01/1993 - 12/31/1993

$50K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Advanced Technologies/laboratories Intl
Advanced Technologies/Lab Intl, 20010 Century Blvd, Ste 500
Germantown, MD 20874
Principal Investigator

Abstract

SPUTTER COATING IS A WIDELY USED COMMERCIAL TECHNIQUE FOR PRODUCING THIN FILM COATINGS. IN-SITU MONITORING OF CRITICAL THIN FILM PROPERTISE WOULD GREATLY ENHANCE PROCESS CONTROL IN A VARIETY OF SPUTTER COATING PROCESSES. TRADITIONAL 0/20 SCANNING X-RAY DIFFRACTOMETERS ARE POWERFUL ANALYSIS TOOLS CAPABLE OF MEASURING THIN FILM PROPERTISE SUCH AS PHASE COMPOSITION, DEGREE OF CRYSTALLINITY, PREFERRED ORIENTATION, THICKNESS, GRAIN SIZE, AND RESIDUAL STRESS. SCANNING DIFFRACTOMETERS ARE NOT WELL SUITED FOR ON-LINE MONITORING DUE TO THEIR LARGE SIZE AND SLOW COLLECTION TIMES. RESEARCHERS ARE MODIFYING AND INCORPORATING A POSITION SENSITIVE FIBER OPTIC SCINTILLATION X-RAY DETECTOR (PSSD) INTO A SPUTTER COATING CHAMBER. COMPARED TO SCANNING DIFFRACTOMETERS, THE PSSD SYSTEM IS VERY COMPACT AND ROBUST, REQUIRES NO SCANNING, AND HAS VERY RAPID SAMPLING TIMES (LESS THAN 1 SECOND). THE PROJECT IS DEVELOPING A METHOD FOR INCORPORATING THE PSSD DEVICE INTO A SPUTTER CHAMBER, AND INVESTIGATING ITS EFFECTIVENESS IN A SERIES OF COATING EXPERIMENTS.