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Scanning Neutral Helium Microscopy: A novel tool for fast, nondestuctive characterisation of mechanical parameters for nanostructured coatings

Objective

The majority of failures in pattern replication processes are caused by wear of forming and forging master tools. Tribology is the science applied for lowering the wear by developing advanced (nanostructured) coatings. However, even these coatings are subject to wear that manifest itself as changes in the mechanical properties of the master tool in the form of fractures, roughness changes (adhesion) or deformation of the 3D shape. Hence a careful examination of the surface structure is essential for validating the functionality of a master tool. Ideally by applying a fast, reliable measurement, which determines the first wear before any faulty replication takes place. No such method exists at present for nanoscale structures: Scanning probe microscopy is generally slow and not suitable for the high aspect ratio structures often present in forming and forging tools. Scanning electron and helium ion microscopy offer alternatives. However both beams penetrate into the material which limits the accuracy, the beam energy can cause surface damage and there may be image distortions due to charging effects. Here we propose a new instrument based on NEUTRAL helium atoms. The technique is strictly surface sensitive with no penetration into the bulk (the atoms interact with the outermost electronic layer on the surface). The energy of the atoms is less than 0.1 eV, 4-6 order of magnitudes less than typical electron and helium ion energies. The new technique can image down to 10 nm and has the potential of being fast and applicable over large areas. We will apply the new technique to access the tool lifetime improvement by the application of nanostructured coatings to micron and nanometer precision master tools from SME partners Kenneth Winther A/S and NILTechnology. Metrology partners DFM and KTH will evaluate the new instrument in relation to ISO-standard parameters with the aim of introducing the technique to the ISO TC213/WG16 committee for future standardization.

Call for proposal

FP7-NMP-2012-SME-6
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Coordinator

UNIVERSITETET I BERGEN
Address
Museplassen 1
5020 Bergen
Norway
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 901 676
Administrative Contact
Liv-Grethe Gudmundsen (Ms.)

Participants (7)

MB SCIENTIFIC AB
Sweden
EU contribution
€ 890 400
Address
Falhagsleden, 61
753 23 Uppsala
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Mitsuse Matsuki (Ms.)
DANSK FUNDAMENTAL METROLOGI
Denmark
EU contribution
€ 348 568
Address
Matematiktorvet 307
2800 Kongens - Lyngby
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Jan Conrad Petersen (Dr.)
UNIVERSIDAD AUTONOMA DE MADRID
Spain
EU contribution
€ 419 800
Address
Calle Einstein 3 Ciudad Univ Cantoblanco Rectorado
28049 Madrid
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Mari Carmen Puerta (Ms.)
AS KENNETH WINTHER-VARKTOJSFABRIK
Denmark
EU contribution
€ 319 200
Address
Tofteengen 7
3540 Lynge
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Mads Hedelin Rytter (Mr.)
NIL TECHNOLOGY APS
Denmark
EU contribution
€ 144 900
Address
Haldor Topsoes Alle 1
2800 Kongens Lyngby
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Theodor Kamp Nielsen (Mr.)
KUNGLIGA TEKNISKA HOEGSKOLAN
Sweden
EU contribution
€ 374 040
Address
Brinellvagen 8
100 44 Stockholm
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Claudia Hakanen (Mrs.)
THE CHANCELLOR MASTERS AND SCHOLARS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 332 904
Address
Trinity Lane The Old Schools
CB2 1TN Cambridge
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Renata Schaeffer (Ms.)