Industries

Aerospace & Defense

EAG is your R&D partner, working with aerospace and defense manufacturers and suppliers to create faster, safer and more reliable aircraft and components. We use the most advanced…

EAG is your R&D partner, working with aerospace and defense manufacturers and suppliers to create faster, safer and more reliable aircraft and components. We use the most advanced analytical methodologies to answer complex engineering, materials and manufacturing problems, from evaluating the purity of new materials to confirming the characteristics of ceramic matrix composites. For research, development and production, we work alongside your technical staff to formulate and troubleshoot the next generation of aerospace and defense materials.

Chemicals & Basic Materials

For over 50 years, EAG’s scientists have applied advanced analytical techniques to solve tough problems and support R&D activities for manufacturers and users of a wide variety…

For over 50 years, EAG’s scientists have applied advanced analytical techniques to solve tough problems and support R&D activities for manufacturers and users of a wide variety of chemicals and materials. EAG offers reliable analytical results, development support for novel products, and answers to complex problems for manufacturers of chemicals used in metals, fibers, plastics, coatings, adhesives, construction materials, textiles, lubricants and more.

Consumer Products

Consumer products manufacturers and partners turn to EAG to answer R&D questions, ensure supply chain quality, respond to regulatory requirements and ensure well-supported legal…

Consumer products manufacturers and partners turn to EAG to answer R&D questions, ensure supply chain quality, respond to regulatory requirements and ensure well-supported legal arguments. EAG scientists have helped all types of consumer products companies accelerate innovation, resolve manufacturing concerns and comply with evolving regulations.

Food & Agriculture

Drive R&D productivity and keep pace with evolving environmental regulations. From agrochemical development to evaluating innovative packaging solutions, EAG scientists support…

Drive R&D productivity and keep pace with evolving environmental regulations.

From agrochemical development to evaluating innovative packaging solutions, EAG scientists support the agriculture/food s industry with scientific expertise required to enhance shelf life, ensure product safety and understand environmental impact. Whether in need of food quality investigations or help supporting regulatory filing of new chemicals, ask EAG. WE KNOW HOW.

Law

When a business’s brand and reputation is at stake, clients turn to EAG’s litigation support services for dependable scientific answers. Since 1959, our scientific expertise,…

When a business’s brand and reputation is at stake, clients turn to EAG’s litigation support services for dependable scientific answers. Since 1959, our scientific expertise, testing and testimony have supported legal strategies for intellectual property, product liability and insurance cases. Our scientists offer expertise in technology, life sciences, electronics, industrial and consumer products, having tested a broad array of materials for legal challenges. We understand the unique needs of legal projects – speed, effective communication, reliability and confidentiality.

Medical Device & Diagnostics

From initial concept and prototypes to verification/validation, submission and launch, EAG Laboratories is your partner in medical device development. From implant…

From initial concept and prototypes to verification/validation, submission and launch, EAG Laboratories is your partner in medical device development. From implant biocompatibility studies to surface chemistry for contact lenses, we have the experience and techniques to characterize, test and assure purity of medical devices and their materials, components, products and packaging. By utilizing our unique expertise in materials sciences, chemistry, electronics and regulatory support, EAG empowers device companies to create new ways to heal and improve patient quality of life.

Pharmaceuticals

Overcome R&D roadblocks with technical and regulatory know-how. For over two decades, EAG scientists have helped solve complex issues for the pharmaceutical Industry. Using…

Overcome R&D roadblocks with technical and regulatory know-how. For over two decades, EAG scientists have helped solve complex issues for the pharmaceutical Industry. Using multidisciplinary science and engineering, we help improve product development efficiency, avoid regulatory setbacks and uncover sources of problematic manufacturing issues. From GLP and cGMP studies to contaminant and packaging investigations, the scientists of EAG support every phase of the product lifecycle.

Technology

For the high-tech industry, EAG is the leader in materials characterization, surface analysis, microscopy and electronics testing. Our scientists and engineers troubleshoot and…

For the high-tech industry, EAG is the leader in materials characterization, surface analysis, microscopy and electronics testing. Our scientists and engineers troubleshoot and solve issues with consumer electronics, chip packages, printed circuit boards, displays, sensors, high-speed communications and more. We meet the demanding needs of technology innovation, enabling our clients to have confidence in their research & development, supply chains, and ultimately their manufacturing processes

Services

Materials Testing & Analysis

When it comes to understanding the physical structure, chemical properties and composition of materials, no scientific services company offers the breadth of experience, diversity…

When it comes to understanding the physical structure, chemical properties and composition of materials, no scientific services company offers the breadth of experience, diversity of analytical techniques or technical ingenuity of EAG. From polymers to composites, thin films to superalloys—we know how to leverage materials sciences to gain a competitive edge. At EAG, we don’t just perform testing, we drive commercial success—through thoughtfully designed investigations, technically superior analyses and expert interpretation of data.

Microelectronics Test & Engineering

Whether connecting the internet of things, guiding surgical lasers or powering the latest smart phone, integrated circuits and microelectronics touch nearly every aspect of human…

Whether connecting the internet of things, guiding surgical lasers or powering the latest smart phone, integrated circuits and microelectronics touch nearly every aspect of human life. In the world of technology, innovation and continuous improvement are imperatives—and being able to quickly and reliably test, debug, diagnose failures and take corrective action can make the difference between a doomed product launch and building a successful global brand. EAG offers you the world’s largest and most diverse collection of specialized analytical instrumentation, capacity to perform a variety of microelectronic tests in parallel, and the multi-disciplinary expertise required to draw true insight from data.

Litigation Support & Expert Testimony

When you need solid science and investigative engineering to address product failures, inform legal strategy, protect intellectual property or address product liability disputes,…

When you need solid science and investigative engineering to address product failures, inform legal strategy, protect intellectual property or address product liability disputes, turn to EAG. We’ve provided technical consulting, analysis and expert testimony for hundreds of cases involving the aerospace, transportation, medical device, electronics, industrial and consumer product industries. Our team of experts understands the legal process and your need for responsiveness, effective communication, scientifically defensible opinion and confidentiality. From professional consulting to data review to trial preparation and expert witness testimony, ask EAG.

Pharmaceutical & Biopharmaceutical Development Services

EAG Laboratories’ pharmaceutical development services group is now part of Eurofins Biopharma Product Testing. Eurofins BioPharma Product Testing offers…

EAG Laboratories’ pharmaceutical development services group is now part of Eurofins Biopharma Product Testing.

Eurofins BioPharma Product Testing offers unprecedented, multi-location capacity and unmatched expertise through the largest harmonized network of bio/pharma product testing laboratories worldwide. From performing IND-enabling studies to full CMC analytical and QC support, we join your R&D team as a true partner, providing expert guidance to balance regulatory expectations with expediency and cost, and approach technical challenges with flexibility and resolve.

Environmental Testing & Regulatory Compliance

Having helped develop the test methods that shape current regulatory guidelines, EAG chemists, biologists and toxicologists have evaluated the environmental impact of thousands of…

Having helped develop the test methods that shape current regulatory guidelines, EAG chemists, biologists and toxicologists have evaluated the environmental impact of thousands of active ingredients and formulations—from pesticides and pharmaceuticals to industrial chemicals and consumer products. Whether you are exploring “what if” scenarios, registering a new active ingredient or formulation, responding to a data call-in or seeking to understand the latest guidance, turn to EAG for technical excellence, sound advice, GLP-compliant study execution and expert interpretation.

Crop Biotechnology & Development

EAG combines biotechnology and protein characterization expertise with more than 50 years' experience analyzing chemical compounds in plant and environmental matrices to address…

EAG combines biotechnology and protein characterization expertise with more than 50 years’ experience analyzing chemical compounds in plant and environmental matrices to address the growing needs of the biotechnology crop industry. We offer a wide range of techniques required to fully characterize the event insertion and expressed proteins, as well as the various studies required to confirm the food, feed and environmental safety of products that represent the trait. From early-stage protein confirmation to GLP-compliant EDSP and allergenicity testing, we help you make faster, more informed development decisions and comply with evolving global regulations of genetically engineered crops.

Custom Synthesis & Radiolabeling

No contract service provider has more experience performing custom synthesis and producing isotopically labeled compounds to support product development in life science, chemical…

No contract service provider has more experience performing custom synthesis and producing isotopically labeled compounds to support product development in life science, chemical and related industries than we do. From 14C and 3H radiolabeled clinical trial materials synthesized under cGMP, to stable-labeled active ingredients for metabolism and environmental fate/effects testing, turn to EAG. We have extensive experience with multi-step and other complex synthesis projects, and our comprehensive, in-house analytical services ensure quick turnaround of purity and structural confirmation.

Techniques

Chromatography

Using an array of advanced separation techniques and innovative technology, we conduct highly precise analytical chromatography for various industries. Whether you want a closer…

Using an array of advanced separation techniques and innovative technology, we conduct highly precise analytical chromatography for various industries. Whether you want a closer look at the purity of your pharmaceutical or need to better understand an agrochemical’s components, EAG has the expertise to separate and evaluate any compound.

Mass Spectrometry

Need to evaluate the molecular structure of a compound or identify its origins? EAG knows how. With state-of-the-art tools, we can separate, vaporize and ionize the atoms and…

Need to evaluate the molecular structure of a compound or identify its origins? EAG knows how. With state-of-the-art tools, we can separate, vaporize and ionize the atoms and molecules in almost any pure or complex material to detect and obtain mass spectra of the components. We rely on decades of experience in mass spectrometry to provide our clients with precise analyses and the best detection limits.

Imaging

EAG is a world leader in high-resolution imaging down to the atomic level. We offer unmatched analytical know-how, generating extremely detailed surface and near surface images…

EAG is a world leader in high-resolution imaging down to the atomic level. We offer unmatched analytical know-how, generating extremely detailed surface and near surface images for various industries, from consumer electronics to nanotechnology. Using state-of-the-art equipment and innovative techniques, we conduct expert imaging to aid in failure analysis, dimensional analysis, process characterization, particle identification and more. If you want to investigate a material with angstrom scale resolution, you can count on EAG to get the job done quickly and precisely.

Spectroscopy

EAG offers a vast array of spectroscopic techniques to clients in various industries, from defense contractors to technology pioneers. We combine unparalleled expertise and…

EAG offers a vast array of spectroscopic techniques to clients in various industries, from defense contractors to technology pioneers. We combine unparalleled expertise and methodology with cutting-edge technology to analyze your organic, inorganic, metallic and composite materials for identification, compositional, structural and contaminant information. Whether you need expert spectroscopic analysis to improve your production process or to surmount a technical challenge, EAG is up to the task.

Physical/Chemical Characterization

Need to identify your unique material? Want to analyze the thermal properties of a sample, or measure the success of a process step? If it has to be done quickly and it has to be…

Need to identify your unique material? Want to analyze the thermal properties of a sample, or measure the success of a process step? If it has to be done quickly and it has to be done right, you can count on EAG. We offer a range of adaptable techniques and innovative methods to evaluate the physical and chemical characteristics of any compound. Our highly precise testing and analytical services will improve your production process, expedite R&D and help you conquer any technical challenge.

About

A Global Scientific Services Company

One of the most respected names in contract research and testing, EAG Laboratories is a global scientific services company operating at the intersection of science, technology and…

One of the most respected names in contract research and testing, EAG Laboratories is a global scientific services company operating at the intersection of science, technology and business. The scientists and engineers of EAG apply multi-disciplinary expertise, advanced analytical techniques and “we know how” resolve to answer complex questions that drive commerce around the world.

Our Customers

Science and technology transcend industry boundaries, and so does demand for EAG’s expertise. We partner with companies across a broad spectrum of high-tech, high-impact and…

Science and technology transcend industry boundaries, and so does demand for EAG’s expertise. We partner with companies across a broad spectrum of high-tech, high-impact and highly regulated industries. We help our customers innovate new and improved products, investigate manufacturing problems, perform advanced analyses to determine safety, efficacy and regulatory compliance, and protect their brands.

Our Company Culture

EAG’s corporate culture is firmly rooted in four guiding principles: “foster a growth mindset,” “find a better way,” “earn more loyal customers,” and “win…

EAG’s corporate culture is firmly rooted in four guiding principles: “foster a growth mindset,” “find a better way,” “earn more loyal customers,” and “win together.” Across all of our 20+ locations, you will find a true passion for science and the power of science to improve the world we live in. Hear what some of our ~1200 scientists, engineers and support personnel say about what it means to be part of EAG Laboratories.

Careers

EAG is growing, and we are always looking for talented, problem-solving oriented individuals to join our company. If you have a “we know how” spirit, we want to hear from you.…

EAG is growing, and we are always looking for talented, problem-solving oriented individuals to join our company. If you have a “we know how” spirit, we want to hear from you. Browse current openings now, and re-visit our careers page often.

Hydrogen, Carbon, Oxygen and Iron Contamination Measurements in ALD Films using XPS and SIMS

APPLICATION NOTE

CONTAMINATION IN ALD FOR SEMICONDUCTORS

  • ALD can produce films that are high in H, C, O and metals.
  • High levels of H, C, O and metals are not desirable in most semiconductor films.
  • Improved plasma sources reduce contamination in nitride based ALD grown films [1].
  • XPS is commonly used for accurate composition profiles. However for H, C and O concentrations of 5 at% or less then XPS becomes background limited.
  • SIMS analysis is required for accurate H, C and O profiles 5 at%and lower.
  • Trace metals such as Fe can be measured down to 1E15 at/cm3 .

XPS DEPTH PROFILING

Composition Depth Profiles

Photoelectron emission intensity has very little dependence on surface chemistry. Intensity is dependent mostly on surface concentrations. Thus XPS is known to provide very good quantitative composition measurements. Depth profiles are done by alternating sputter etching of the surface with analysis cycles. The result is concentration vs. depth profiles with good quantification regardless of the material. However in some materials preferential sputtering of one element over another can alter the original composition.

XPS DEPTH PROFILING

XPS for Composition in ALD Films

XPS for Composition in ALD Films

  • Composition profiles for Sample 210 will have good accuracy for In, Al and N. The profile at the surface showing oxygen displacing nitrogen is likely real.
  • Sample 219 shows an uneven distribution of N through the AlGaN layer. The substrate GaN is not quantified due to a spectral interference.

XPS for Carbon and Oxygen in ALD Films

  • ALD films tend to incorporate relatively high levels of H, C and O during growth.
  • ALD film composition is commonly measured by XPS due to its inherently quantitative nature. Thus C and O profiles by XPS are often seen.
  • XPS has high C and O backgrounds. Levels of 10 at% are probably real, levels of 5 at% might be real, and 2-3 at% is probably background.
  • Sample 210 shows C at 10 at% and O at 2 to 6 at% – C is real and O is background.
  • Sample 219 shows C at 2 at% and O 6 to 8 at% – both C and O are strongly affected by background.

TECHNIQUES FOR ALD ANALYSIS

XPS (X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy)

  • XPS provides survey analysis capability for elements Li through U
  • Binding energy measurements provide oxidation state information
  • Depth profiles are inherently quantitative, subject to preferential sputtering effects

SIMS (Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry)

  • SIMS can detect every element in the periodic table including H with ppm to ppt detection limits.
  • Depth profiles show layer structure, dopants and contaminants.
  • Layers from 1.2 nm to 10 µm can be profiled.

SIMS DEPTH PROFILING

Trace Element Depth Profiles

SIMS has ppm to ppt detection limits for every element in the periodic table including H. A primary ion beam sputter etches the sample surface, both generating ions from the sample material that can be mass analyzed to determine the element. Sputter etching forms a crater enabling sampling with depth. SIMS quantification depends on standards. The standard must have the elements of interest in the same matrix material. Quantification is generally valid from 1 at% to trace level.

SIMS for Carbon and Oxygen in ALD Films

SIMS for Carbon and Oxygen in ALD Films

  • SIMS combines high depth resolution for thin films with very good detection limits for H, C and O making SIMS a very good choice for ALD contaminant depth profiling.
  • Detection limit for H is 1E17 at/cm3. Detection limit for C is 2E15 at/cm3. Detection limit for O is 1E15 at/cm3.
  • Detection limits for H, C and O are very good due to good vacuum systems, high sputter rates, and good sensitivity for these elements.
  • Concentrations of C and O reported in Samples 210 and 219 are well above background.

SIMS for Composition in ALD Films

SIMS for Composition in ALD Films

  • EAG has developed a protocol called ‘PCOR-SIMS’. We use the SIMS measurement itself to measure layer composition.
  • We measure composition so we can use the correct sensitivity factors for the dopant or contaminant being measured.
  • We measure composition at every data point allowing us to use the correct sensitivity factor at every data point. The result is point-by-point correct SIMS – or PCOR-SIMS.

H, C, O, and Fe Profiles by SIMS

H, C, O, and Fe Profiles by SIMS

  • H, C and O can be measured together with very good depth resolution and very good detection limits.
  • Trace metal profiles require a separate measurement. The profile seen here is an overlay.
  • The choice of metal to profile depends on the deposition equipment and precursor gases used.

SOURCES OF BACKGROUND IN ALD ANALYSIS

Background from H, C, N and O comes from the residual gas in the instrument vacuum system. Gas arrives at the sample surface and the likely-hood of sticking to the surface depends on the gas, the sample material and the condition of the surface. A freshly sputtered surface increases the likely-hood of the gas sticking.

XPS Background

In XPS depth profiling, the surface is sputter etched, sputtering stops, and the analysis cycle begins. During the analysis cycle, gas from the vacuum has a chance to accumulate on the surface.

SIMS Background

In dynamic SIMS (except for TOF), the surface is continuously sputtered and thus background is a balance between residual gas arrival rate and sample sputter rate. The sample sputter rate is much higher than the residual gas arrival rate and thus dynamic SIMS background is several orders of magnitude lower than XPS.

DISCUSSION

The Choice of XPS for Depth Profile Analysis

  • For film composition, XPS is a good choice. Elemental quantification is the same, regardless of the material, so quantification accuracy is good in all materials. However one must be careful of preferential sputtering where one element is removed preferentially over another, changing the surface composition.
  • For atmospheric elements C and O, XPS can provide good quantification accuracy for concentrations down to 10 at%. At lower concentrations, instrumental background begins to affect the measurement.

The Choice of SIMS for Depth Profile Analysis

  • For atmospheric elements H, C and O, SIMS can provide excellent detection limits. Background is not an issue for accurate profiles in ALD.
  • Metal impurities can be profiled and accurately quantified.
  • For film composition, SIMS can provide quantification when the material system has been calibrated with standards.
  • Very thin films can be profiled using high depth resolution protocols. 2nm films and even less can be profiled extracting real distribution information.

REFERENCES [1] C. Ozgit-Akgun, E. Goldenberg, A. Kemal Okyay and N. Biyikli, J. Mater. Chem. C 2 (2014) 2123.

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