Optimization of ultrathin film deposition process,
multiple metal layers

Application Note #127


"Optimization of thin film deposition process"
Measurement of two phase deposition of one ultrathin and another thin layer of two different metals.

Thin film deposition is a growing field ranging from chemical vapor deposition (CVD), atomic layer deposition (ALD), sputtering, spin coating, Langmuir-Blodgget deposition and others. MP-SPR provides a unique tool for measurements of ultrathin (0.5-5 nm) and thin (5-100 nm) films. Unlike other techniques, MP-SPR is not limited to semiconductors, but can measure also metals, polymers and organic layers. Uniquely, MP-SPR can also measure multiple layers of materials with different refractive index.

Sensor slides were placed into a CVD chamber in a predefined position pattern. After the deposition process, each of the sensors was measured with SPR Navi™ 200. Since the deposited material had a known complex refractive index, a single wavelength measurement was performed. Thickness was obtained by fitting Fresnel equations.

The inhomogeneity of the process was revealed. In the center of the deposition chamber, the thickness of the material was 10 nm higher than at the outer edge. The process was tuned and the thickness difference was only 4 nm between inner and outer edge. Such optimization of thickness distribution in the chamber is essential for coatings, where the functionality of the coating changes with the deposited thickness. 

MP-SPR is the only method that can not only provide the physical information about the layer (thickness) in air and in liquid environment, but also optical (refractive index), biochemical (interaction with the environment - adsorption, desorption, ..) and electrochemical behaviour.

Recommended instrument for this application:

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Further reading

  • If you are interested in reading more about functional coatings and optimization of coating processes, view also AN#133.

  • Do you want to see how MP-SPR instruments work? Click here.

  • Do you want to see MP-SPR instruments comparison? Click here.
  • Here are a few publications you can have a look at.


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