Surface Analysis and Corrosion Science Lab

The Laboratory for Surface Analysis and Corrosion Science is a state-of-the-art analytical facility containing three electron spectrometers, all having variable angle X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) capabilities and two equipped to perform sub-micron spot Auger Electron Spectroscopy and chemical mapping. In addition, the Laboratory contains two custom designed static and dynamic Secondary Ion Mass Spectroscopy (SIMS) systems. The static SIMS uses a Ga metal ion gun with a spot size of 0.2 microns to allow chemical mapping of surfaces with a detection level approaching the ppm range for many species. A recently acquired multiple technique UHV system integrates variable angle XPS, Auger mapping and profiling and static SIMS with a high ion beam current duoplasmatron ion gun source. Vibrational and optical spectroscopy equipment available includes a Nicolet 760 FTIR spectrometer for mid and far range infrared analysis with multiple sampling accessories for surface and diffuse reflectance, and is equipped with a state-of-the-art Continuum IR microscope. The microscope is equipped with optics for diffuse reflectance microspectroscopy, diamond crystal ATR microspectroscopy, and a unique grazing angle objective for thin film analysis. This complements synchrotron-based FTIR microspectroscopy performed by this laboratory at the National Synchrotron Light Source at BNL on a variety of metallic, polymeric and organo-metallic surfaces. Additional optical equipment includes a custom-designed laser confocal microscopy and topographic mapping system capable of analyzing large area samples (up to several inches in diameter) with associated image processing software. Other software developed in this laboratory is available for laser speckle interferometry that allows for detection of small changes in surface features or their positions, which can be displayed as a vector map of the surface. The laboratory is also equipped with a UV-vis spectrometer system for liquid or reflection measurements. A high sensitivity atomic absorption spectrometer has recently been purchased which will be equipped with a graphite furnace for enhanced elemental sensitivity. Shipley-Ronal Corporation has recently donated a Cambridge Stereoscan 260 SEM to the laboratory. Overall, this combination of advanced analytical XPS/Auger/SIMS/Infrared/optical facilities allow for state-of-the-art surface characterization and chemical mapping.

Other equipment associated with this laboratory includes an ultra high vacuum fabrication chamber configured with two saddle-field ion guns for novel thin film fabrication through Ion Beam Assisted Deposition (IBAD) and a prototype high vacuum chamber for femtosecond Ti-sapphire laser ablation for film deposition and profiling for chemical analysis. A DURIP (Defense University Research Instrumentation Program) proposal was recently awarded to build a high precision materials synthesis and analysis vacuum apparatus which will enable state-of-the-art control for both micro-machining and inspection as well as thin film synthesis when interfaced to the proposed femtosecond laser.

Our electrochemical analysis facility includes three potentiostats capable of nA range current measurement with PC-based computer control and data acquisition and analysis systems, and electrochemical impedance and noise analysis systems. Several controlled atmosphere glove boxes are also available to allow for sample preparation and transfer to the spectrometer facilities without risk of environmental contamination or atmospheric surface reaction.

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Materials Science Department June-2005