Theta Probe XPS Instrument

Thermo Scientific Theta Probe is a small spot XPS instrument which has the unique ability to collect angle resolved spectra without the need to tilt the sample, providing the capability to characterize ultra-thin layers non-destructively.

New and emerging technologies rely on the engineering of the near-surface region of a solid surface. Such technologies include biomedical devices, surface modified polymers and materials within advanced semiconductor devices. For this type of material, it is essential that the composition of the first few nanometers is known with confidence. Theta Probe is a unique XPS spectrometer that provides this information by making use of parallel angle resolved XPS (PARXPS). Contained within the Avantage data system is all of the advanced software to deal with the ARXPS data and produce accurate and precise answers.

XPS is well-established in many branches of materials characterization and it is now an essential tool for the development of advanced materials in many areas of technology from bio-materials to semiconductors. The angle resolving feature on Theta Probe makes it ideal for technologies in which the composition of the top few nanometers of the material is important. These include self-assembled monolayers, surface modified polymers and semiconductor devices.

Key Features
  • A high-performance XPS instrument
  • Patented Theta technology provides the unique ability to collect angle-resolved XPS spectra over a 60° angular range, in parallel, without tilting the sample and allows the instrument to characterize ultra-thin films non-destructively
  • X-ray monochromator with user-selectable spot size in the range 15µm to 400µm
  • Parallel angle-resolved XPS (PARXPS) analysis without sample tilting
  • Ability to handle large or multiple samples
  • Controlled by Avantage, a Windows-based data system
  • CCD sample alignment microscope perpendicular to the sample surface
Lens, Analyzer, and Detector
  • Photoelectrons are collected by an electrostatic lens having a large angular acceptance (60°), the Radian lens
  • Such a large acceptance angle maximizes sensitivity and allows a large angular range to be collected in PARXPS measurements
  • The axis of the lens is 50° from the sample normal and so electrons are collected over the range 20° to 80° (relative to the sample normal)
  • The 180° spherical sector analyser is fitted with a two-dimensional detector in the output plane
  • The two-dimensional detector provides a means of multi-channel detection, having up to 112 energy channels and up to 96 angular channels
  • The lens in Theta Probe is unique because it can be operated in either of two modes:
  • Conventional mode, for spectroscopy when there is no requirement for angle-resolved information
  • Angle-resolving mode
X-ray Source
  • All Theta Probe instruments are fitted with a microfocusing monochromator
  • User defines the analysis area by selecting the X-ray spot size in the range 15µm to 400µm.
Depth Profiling
  • The digitally controlled EX05 ion gun can be used to provide excellent depth profiles even when using low energy ions
  • Azimuthal rotation of the sample is available for the ultimate in depth profiling
Sample Handling
  • All Theta Probe instruments have a fully motorized stage capable of five axes of movement
  • Stage can accommodate large samples—its movement range in X and Y is 70mm and 25mm in Z (height)
Vacuum System

Analysis chamber is constructed from 5mm thick mu-metal to maximize the efficiency of the magnetic shielding, rather than using less effective internal or external shields

Sample Preparation

If preparation facilities are required then one of a range of preparation chambers can be fitted

Thermo Scientific surface analysis instruments and components are controlled by the Avantage data system:
  • Integrates all aspects of the analysis, including instrument control, data acquisition, data processing and reporting
  • Windows based software package which allows remote control via a network and easy interfacing to third party software packages such as Microsoft Word
  • Takes care of the total analysis process from sample to report

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