Browse Prior Art Database

Scanned Probe Microscope Workstation

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000116988D
Original Publication Date: 1995-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-31
Document File: 6 page(s) / 255K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Hammond, JM: AUTHOR [+7]

Abstract

Described is a hardware and software implementation of a Scanned Probe Microscope Workstation (SPMW). The SPMW utilizes a Scanned Tunneling Microscope (STM) [1] with a Scanning Proximity Microscope (SXM) electrical probe [2] along with full programmability.

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Scanned Probe Microscope Workstation

      Described is a hardware and software implementation of a
Scanned Probe Microscope Workstation (SPMW).  The SPMW utilizes a
Scanned Tunneling Microscope (STM) [1]  with a Scanning Proximity
Microscope (SXM) electrical probe [2]  along with full
programmability.

      The SPMW with the STM and SXM provides accuracy for measuring
micron and submicron scale three dimensional objects.  The SPMW has
the capability of providing three dimension analysis, non-contact and
nanometer scale microscopies on full samples up to 8" in diameter and
1/2" thick and provides the analysis without destroying the sample
part.  The workstation incorporates numerous sample handling, data
gathering and analysis automation features for enhanced ease of use.

      The structure of the workstation includes an instrument
platform, power and controls, image processing equipment, and data
analysis circuitry, as well as operational software.  The user
interface includes a trackball pointing device, keyboard, and a
system display.

      Fig. 1 shows the instrument platform's major components:
Coarse viewer 10 provides visual feedback for operator use in initial
positioning of the sample in the XY and theta positions.  Coarse XYZ
theta positioner 11 positions any point of interest on the sample to
the nearest ten microns and one degree beneath coarse viewer 10.
Fine viewer 12 provides feedback for operator use in positioning the
sample to the final area of interest.  Fine XY positioner/locking
sample carrier 13 holds sample plate 14 and positions the point of
interest on the sample to submicron resolution.  Scanner/approach
device 15 moves its tip to the surface of the sample and scans over
the area of interest.  Heterodyne interferometer 16 detects changes
in tip oscillation amplitude.  This is a measurement of the
tip-to-sample surface gap.  It feeds the signal to the control
electronics (not shown) for processing.

      Coarse viewer 10 consists of a zoom microscope and camera
viewing system mounted on a worm drive focusing system.  It has a
view ranging from 0.7" to 0.1" and is used to resolve features 0.001"
and larger.

      Coarse XYZ theta positioner 11 is used in conjunction with
coarse viewer 10 to locate and position the area to be measured.  It
consists of a pair of standard linear C box structure axes supporting
a platen on crossed roller re-circulating slides.  Linear encoders
feed position information back to the system.  Onto this platform a
bi-directional stepper motor driven that an axis has been integrated
so that the sample rests on top a theta axis chuck.  Coordinated
motion of the three axes gives the system the ability to synthesize
rotational motion about an arbitrary axis in the workspace
perpendicular to the XY plane.  This provides measurement of
non-symmetrical structures, such as lines for trenches, since the
best instrument performance is achieved when scanni...