Time of flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS) for essential and enhanced surface analysis

Time of Flight Secondary Ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS) provides trace molecular analysis of the top surface of various materials. TOF-SIMS analysis detects low concentrations of molecules and elements to ppm levels. 

TOF-SIMS helps clients to understand surface chemistry in organic and inorganic films. The surface chemistry is of high interest due to factors such as modifications from exposure to environmental and process conditions, contamination from surface active species, and specific chemistry for adhesion or aesthetics. ToF-SIMS is very surface sensitive, with all data coming from the top 10nm of the sample. Maintaining the preservation and cleanliness of this surface is critical for a successful ToF-SIMS analysis.

ToF-SIMS is deployed to address surface chemistry questions concerning

• Adhesion: contamination that hinders adhesives, or residues that impart unwanted adhesion
• Aesthetics: surface chemistry can be very important to the appearance of different materials, affecting paint color, or regarding instances of 'blush' and yellowing
• Semiconductor materials: specific chemistry related to Si wafers and layered semiconductor materials

TOF-SIMS provides qualitative surface elemental and chemical analysis of organics and inorganics, along with elemental and chemical imaging.

Data obtained is rich and can be powerful, in order to solve complex surface chemistry problems, and interpreted by mass spectrometrists with experience in specialty chemicals, semiconductor, coatings, and adhesives applications.  

Intertek also provides an integrated analytical approach to complex problem-solving by combining ToF-SIMS data with other complementary techniques, such as X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), Imaging Raman, and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM).

TOF-SIMS analysis applications

• Surface contamination
• Characterization of organic and inorganic coatings
• Impurity identification
• Thin film composition
• Thin film impurities
• Contamination and residue analysis
• Elemental analysis

Industries which benefit from TOF-SIMS analysis include electronics, aerospace, semiconductors, automotive, solar, specialty chemicals, adhesives, paints, coatings and polymers. Our specialists have accrued knowledge from decades of experience.

Contact Intertek