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Surface Science Facility

The Surface Science Facility provides multiple-technique characterization of a variety of surfaces with regard to atomic structure, surface chemical composition, and chemical bonding characteristics.


  1. Nanoindentors

    Two nanoindentation instruments ( Hysitron and UMIS) are available to determine surface mechanical properties and tribological behavior. An additional nanoindentor is being installed that allows nanoindentation and friction measurements at up to 500 C.

  2. PHI 590A Scanning Auger Microprobe

    This scanning Auger microprobe is capable of standard Auger analysis with 200 nm lateral resolution and provides composition information in the top few atomic layers with about 1% monolayer sensitivity. It is equipped with in situ fracture and argon ion sputter for depth profiling. A fast entry system allows rapid specimen turnaround.

  3. VG ESCA/SIMS system

    This is a fully computer-controlled instrument from Vacuum Generators that combines two analytical instruments into a single workstation, viz., x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS). The XPS subsystem can be run with a normal Al/Mg anode or a monochromatized Al anode for higher energy resolution. A small spot mode allows analysis down to 150 microns. The SIMS subsystem works with a quadrupole mass spectrometer with unit mass resolution up to m/e = 800 and single ion detection capability.