Characterisation of Thin Films Using a Coherence Scanning Interferometry


Accurate measurement of film thickness and its uniformity are very important to the performance of many coated surfaces and for many applications are critical. Effective inspection of the film thickness and uniformity is the key to high performance. Conventionally, film thickness is meas- ured using a spectrophotometer/reflectometer, ellipsometer or a physical step measurement; however, these techniques all have limitations. Coherence Scanning Interferometry (CSI) is an established method to measure surface topography as this technique offers many advantages such as speed, ease of use and accuracy. The measurement of “thick” films (exceeding ~1.5 μm) which gives rise to clearly separate fringe bunches is a well-established CSI capability. However, a methodology known as the ‘helical complex field’ (HCF) [1] [2] function allows film thickness to be measured down to ~25 nm. This new method, combined with Coherence Correlation Interferometry (CCI) [3] offers film thickness measurements with sub-nanometre vertical resolution and ~1 μm lateral resolution. It is ideally suited for detailed analysis of coated optical surfaces. In this paper, the fundamentals of the techniques are described and some case studies are presented.

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Yu, Y. and Mansfield, D. (2015) Characterisation of Thin Films Using a Coherence Scanning Interferometry. Journal of Materials Science and Chemical Engineering, 3, 15-21. doi: 10.4236/msce.2015.31003.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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