Imaging ultra thin layers with helium ion microscopy: Utilizing the channeling contrast mechanism

G. Hlawacek, V. Veligura, S. Lorbek, T.F. Mocking, A. George, Raoul van Gastel, Henricus J.W. Zandvliet, Bene Poelsema

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Abstract

Background: Helium ion microscopy is a new high-performance alternative to classical scanning electron microscopy. It provides superior resolution and high surface sensitivity by using secondary electrons. Results: We report on a new contrast mechanism that extends the high surface sensitivity that is usually achieved in secondary electron images, to backscattered helium images. We demonstrate how thin organic and inorganic layers as well as self-assembled monolayers can be visualized on heavier element substrates by changes in the backscatter yield. Thin layers of light elements on heavy substrates should have a negligible direct influence on backscatter yields. However, using simple geometric calculations of the opaque crystal fraction, the contrast that is observed in the images can be interpreted in terms of changes in the channeling probability. Conclusion: The suppression of ion channeling into crystalline matter by adsorbed thin films provides a new contrast mechanism for HIM. This dechanneling contrast is particularly well suited for the visualization of ultrathin layers of light elements on heavier substrates. Our results also highlight the importance of proper vacuum conditions for channeling-based experimental methods
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)507-512
Number of pages6
JournalBeilstein journal of nanotechnology
Volume3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Fingerprint

Helium
helium ions
Microscopic examination
Ions
microscopy
Imaging techniques
light elements
Substrates
Electrons
Self assembled monolayers
heavy elements
Visualization
Vacuum
Crystalline materials
Thin films
Crystals
Scanning electron microscopy
electrons
helium
retarding

Keywords

  • METIS-287263
  • IR-81094

Cite this

Hlawacek, G. ; Veligura, V. ; Lorbek, S. ; Mocking, T.F. ; George, A. ; van Gastel, Raoul ; Zandvliet, Henricus J.W. ; Poelsema, Bene. / Imaging ultra thin layers with helium ion microscopy: Utilizing the channeling contrast mechanism. In: Beilstein journal of nanotechnology. 2012 ; Vol. 3. pp. 507-512.
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abstract = "Background: Helium ion microscopy is a new high-performance alternative to classical scanning electron microscopy. It provides superior resolution and high surface sensitivity by using secondary electrons. Results: We report on a new contrast mechanism that extends the high surface sensitivity that is usually achieved in secondary electron images, to backscattered helium images. We demonstrate how thin organic and inorganic layers as well as self-assembled monolayers can be visualized on heavier element substrates by changes in the backscatter yield. Thin layers of light elements on heavy substrates should have a negligible direct influence on backscatter yields. However, using simple geometric calculations of the opaque crystal fraction, the contrast that is observed in the images can be interpreted in terms of changes in the channeling probability. Conclusion: The suppression of ion channeling into crystalline matter by adsorbed thin films provides a new contrast mechanism for HIM. This dechanneling contrast is particularly well suited for the visualization of ultrathin layers of light elements on heavier substrates. Our results also highlight the importance of proper vacuum conditions for channeling-based experimental methods",
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Imaging ultra thin layers with helium ion microscopy: Utilizing the channeling contrast mechanism. / Hlawacek, G.; Veligura, V.; Lorbek, S.; Mocking, T.F.; George, A.; van Gastel, Raoul; Zandvliet, Henricus J.W.; Poelsema, Bene.

In: Beilstein journal of nanotechnology, Vol. 3, 2012, p. 507-512.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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T1 - Imaging ultra thin layers with helium ion microscopy: Utilizing the channeling contrast mechanism

AU - Hlawacek, G.

AU - Veligura, V.

AU - Lorbek, S.

AU - Mocking, T.F.

AU - George, A.

AU - van Gastel, Raoul

AU - Zandvliet, Henricus J.W.

AU - Poelsema, Bene

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N2 - Background: Helium ion microscopy is a new high-performance alternative to classical scanning electron microscopy. It provides superior resolution and high surface sensitivity by using secondary electrons. Results: We report on a new contrast mechanism that extends the high surface sensitivity that is usually achieved in secondary electron images, to backscattered helium images. We demonstrate how thin organic and inorganic layers as well as self-assembled monolayers can be visualized on heavier element substrates by changes in the backscatter yield. Thin layers of light elements on heavy substrates should have a negligible direct influence on backscatter yields. However, using simple geometric calculations of the opaque crystal fraction, the contrast that is observed in the images can be interpreted in terms of changes in the channeling probability. Conclusion: The suppression of ion channeling into crystalline matter by adsorbed thin films provides a new contrast mechanism for HIM. This dechanneling contrast is particularly well suited for the visualization of ultrathin layers of light elements on heavier substrates. Our results also highlight the importance of proper vacuum conditions for channeling-based experimental methods

AB - Background: Helium ion microscopy is a new high-performance alternative to classical scanning electron microscopy. It provides superior resolution and high surface sensitivity by using secondary electrons. Results: We report on a new contrast mechanism that extends the high surface sensitivity that is usually achieved in secondary electron images, to backscattered helium images. We demonstrate how thin organic and inorganic layers as well as self-assembled monolayers can be visualized on heavier element substrates by changes in the backscatter yield. Thin layers of light elements on heavy substrates should have a negligible direct influence on backscatter yields. However, using simple geometric calculations of the opaque crystal fraction, the contrast that is observed in the images can be interpreted in terms of changes in the channeling probability. Conclusion: The suppression of ion channeling into crystalline matter by adsorbed thin films provides a new contrast mechanism for HIM. This dechanneling contrast is particularly well suited for the visualization of ultrathin layers of light elements on heavier substrates. Our results also highlight the importance of proper vacuum conditions for channeling-based experimental methods

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