Atom probe field ion microscopy of high resistivity materials

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Over the last 30 years the atom probe has proved to be a powerful tool for studying nanometer-sized compositional fluctuations in a wide range of metallic alloys but has had only limited applications to semiconductors and ceramics. One of the primary reasons for this difference is the higher resistivity of semiconducting and ceramic specimens. Because of this high resistivity, the high voltage field evaporation pulse is attenuated before it reaches the apex of the specimen thereby making the pulse ineffective for field evaporation. Experiments have demonstrated that both variants of the voltage-pulsed atom probe (i.e., those instruments in which the ... continued below

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4 p.

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Sibrandij, S. J.; Larson, D. J. & Miller, M. K. February 1, 1998.

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Description

Over the last 30 years the atom probe has proved to be a powerful tool for studying nanometer-sized compositional fluctuations in a wide range of metallic alloys but has had only limited applications to semiconductors and ceramics. One of the primary reasons for this difference is the higher resistivity of semiconducting and ceramic specimens. Because of this high resistivity, the high voltage field evaporation pulse is attenuated before it reaches the apex of the specimen thereby making the pulse ineffective for field evaporation. Experiments have demonstrated that both variants of the voltage-pulsed atom probe (i.e., those instruments in which the field evaporation pulse is applied directly to the specimen and those in which the negative pulse is applied to a counter electrode in front of the specimen) are equally affected. In this overview, the limits of applicability of the voltage-pulsed atom probe to high resistivity materials are examined. In this study, a wide range of materials have been examined to determine whether field ion microscopy and voltage-pulsed field evaporation can be achieved and the results are summarized in the report. Field ion microscopy including dc field evaporation was possible for all materials except bulk ceramic insulators and glasses. Field ion microscopy requires some conductivity both to achieve a high electric field at the apex of the specimen, and also to support the field ion current. In contrast, voltage-pulsed field evaporation requires transmission of the pulse to the apex of the specimen. All metallic alloys including high resistance alloys and metallic glasses were successfully field evaporated with a voltage pulse. Specimens that were produced from bulk material of several conducting ceramics including MoSi, TiB and TiC were also successfully field evaporated with a voltage pulse.

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4 p.

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OSTI as DE98005023

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  • Microscopy and microanalysis 1998, Atlanta, GA (United States), 12-16 Jul 1998

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  • Other: DE98005023
  • Report No.: ORNL/CP--96507
  • Report No.: CONF-980713--
  • Grant Number: AC05-96OR22464
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 650363
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc703965

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  • February 1, 1998

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 12, 2015, 6:31 a.m.

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  • Jan. 15, 2016, 12:49 p.m.

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Sibrandij, S. J.; Larson, D. J. & Miller, M. K. Atom probe field ion microscopy of high resistivity materials, article, February 1, 1998; Tennessee. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc703965/: accessed June 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.