Polymer and Materials Science
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
Depth profiling with sample rotation has become a frequently applied method to obtain the in-depth distribution of composition in thin films with high resolution. Sample rotation strongly diminishes the effect of local variations of the ion beam intensity and of the sputtering yield, which are the main cause of increasing surface roughness during sputtering and therefore of profile broadening. Capabilities and limitations of rotational profiling are considered with respect to its dependence on various parameters, such as inhomogeneity of the ion beam instensity, ion incidence angle and rotation speed. In particular, it is shown that non-linear components and excentric movement of the sample lead to periodic features in the profile and to non-vanishing degradation of depth resolution with depth. For smooth sample surfaces, depth resolution improves with increasing ion incidence angle but is much less pronounced, as for profiling with stationary samples. For originally rough surfaces, the deterioration of depth resolution with increasing ion incidence angle is considerably reduced. The key parameter for optimized conditions in rotational profiling is the ratio of sputtering rate and rotation speed. The minimum necessary, useful rotation speed depends on this ratio and on the magnitude of other contributions to the depth resolution that are not affected by sample rotation.
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