Acronym: PC-MAN

Contract No. 122/2007

Financed in the frame of PN II - CAPACITIES Programme/Module I


  • the facilities are made available for parties by programation based on request;
  • access conditions/costs - based on invoice/negociated costs in function of the requested service and allocated time.


Prof. Dr. Horia CHIRIAC, General Director (
Dr. Nicoleta LUPU, Head of "Magnetic Materials and Devices" Department (

Tel: +40 232 43 06 80
Fax: +40 232 23 11 32


Electron beam lithography system XENOS XP G2
Alpha Step IQ surface profiler for thin films thickness measurements
Focused Ion Beam - Scanning Electron Microscope Carl Zeiss CrossBeam NEON40EsB FIB-SEM

Electron beam lithography system XENOS XP G2

JEOL JSM 6390A Scanning Electron Microscope equipped with electron beam lithography system XENOS XP G2.

The electron beam lithography system is a complex experimental system used for geometrical nanostructuring activities. The lithography nanostructuring technique of a material’s surface consists in scanning the surface with a focused electron beam, surface which has been previously covered with a polymeric (e.g. e - beam resist) which is sensitive to the electron beam action. In comparison with the optical lithography technique, the electron beam lithography technique permits high resolution geometrical structuring of materials due to the small value of the wavelength (< 1 Ǻ), specific for the accelerated electrons at voltages in the range 10-50 keV.

Using the electron beam lithography technique, the planar geometry of materials can be achieved, which are subsequently used for:

  • various structures/geometries: rezistive, inductive, etc;multilayer nanopillar or nanorod  geometrical structures or for the nanoindentation of nanoporous geometrical structures in ceramic or polymeric templates for various applications (magnetic tunnel junctions, GMR-CPP spin valves, spin injection structures, etc);

  • specific components for lateral spin valves which are used as spin injection systems (nanowires, nanostrips);
  • nanomagnets or nanomagnet arrays.

Technical characteristics of the XENOS XP G2 electron beam lithography system:

  • modular structure which allows easy connection to the JEOL JSM 6390A Scanning Electron Microscope, which permits operation with the electron beam source of SEM;
  • pattern generator hardware system  for the generation/writing of structures;
  • writing speed up to 40 MPixels/s;
  • measuring system of the electron beam current (KEITHLEY 6485);
  • equipped with a blanker (Xenos Beam Blanker) which can be completely driven out of the electron beam direction when the SEM – JEOL system is used for the morphological and compositional characterization of materials, without any supplementary operations;
  • permits the use of the SEM JEOL 6390A microscope chamber with minor experimental changes;
  • provided with basic structures for writing (spiral or meander fill, triangles, lines, circles, rings, polygons, etc.).

The Alpha Step IQ surface profiler used for topological characterization and thin films thickness measurements

Is a high resolution equipment which can measure the thin film thickness with a resolution of 0.1 Ǻ.

The Alpha Step IQ can determine the bi-dimensional topographic analysis of the samples’ surface (thin films, wafers, micro- and nanoelectromechanical systems - MEMS and NEMS, nano or microporous ceramic or polymeric membranes, etc).

Alpha Step IQ gives also information on the surface roughness of materials in planar structures.

Owing to the high resolution, the Alpha Step IQ can be used for the calibration of other equipments in NIRDTP Iasi employed to monitor the thin film thickness during the preparation process, vacuum or electrochemical deposition, such as:

- FTM6 Film Thickness Monitor (0.1 nm resolution);
- INFICON XTC/3M Deposition Controller (0.5% accuracy,: ± 2.5 ppm 0-500C frequency accuracy);
- QCM200 Quartz Crystal Microbalance.

Alpha Step IQ surface profiler.

The technical characteristics of the Alpha Step IQ surface profiler used for topological characterization and thin films thickness measurements are:

  • measures the thickness of transparent and semitransparent thin films;
  • the morphology of the cross section of the thin films can be determined;
  • evaluation of the thickness uniformity on a preset distance.


Thickness profile for a metallic resistive thin film structured in a circular shape.

With the view of the optimization of the thickness measurement process, mainly for ultrathin thin films, the Alpha Step IQ has been positioned on an antivibrating table with the natural vibrating frequency, horizontally and vertically, of 2.5 Hz.

CrossBeam Focused Ion Beam/Scanning Electron Microscope Carl Zeiss  NEON40EsB FIB-SEM

FIB/FE-SEM CrossBeam Carl Zeiss NEON 40 EsB equipped with EDS module.

Is a state of the art technological facility, unique in Romania, used for complex ion beam micro and nanoprocessing/treatment of materials such as:

  • micro- and nanoimprinting activities;
  • nanoindentation  in ceramic, metallic, polymeric membranes of micrometer thicness to produce nanopillars or nanowire array structures;
  • ionic treatments for nanoclusters growth in amorphous matrices;
  • ion beam corrosion for the preparation of geometrical structures specific for microsensors, microactuators, spin injection systems, etc.

The Focused Ion Beam (FIB) system uses a high focused Galium (Ga) ion beam  to locally heat the metal or to evaporate a material for the deposition on a well defined area of micrometer/nanometer size.

Using various gases or organic compounds, the FIB can be used for the corrosion selectively and rapidly any type of material, this facility being useful for a series of special applications such as: (i) preparation of cross sections for the study of interfaces in multilayer systems; (ii) preparation of samples for Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM); (iii) preparation of microsamples by microprocessing of bulk materials, etc.

The FIB/FE-SEM CrossBeam NEON 40 EsB is a complex system used for the nanoprocessing and characterisation of nanomaterials which consists of:

1) ions gun for FIB function;
2) electrons gun for High Resolution Field Emission Electron Scanning Microscopy, which allows in-situ visualization of the structures prepared by ions etching/deposition;
3) EDS detector for qualitative and quantitative determination of materials composition.

The system is complementarly used for the compositional and morphological/topological analysis of materials by Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FE-SEM) and X-ray energy dispersive spectrometry (EDS).

The technical characteristics of the CrossBeam FIB-SEM NEON 40 EsB are :

  • electron beam resolution: 1.1 nm ÷ 2.5 nm for voltages ranging between 20 kV ÷ 1 kV;
  • ion beam resolution 7 nm at 30 kV;
  • magnification: 12x ÷ 2.600.000x (SEM); 635x ÷ 1.500.000x (FIB);
  • equipped with an EsB detector for phase contrast analysis.