Scanning Microscopy


A survey of the most frequently used sample preparation methods for surface analysis methods such as Auger electron spectroscopy (AES), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), ion scattering spectroscopy (ISS) and secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) is presented. Ex-situ preparation before insertion of the sample into the ultrahigh vacuum (UHV) of the analysis chamber comprises common mechanical and chemical methods, whereas in-situ preparation is based on various UHV-compatible procedures like cleavage, fracture, heating and noble gas ion sputtering. Particular care is necessary to avoid misleading chemical and structural alterations of the sample surface. Advantages and limitations of the different approaches can only be compared with respect to a specific sample and the goal of the surface or interface analysis.

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