FEI’s Tecnai Osiris S/TEM goes for speed in analytics

by Debra Vogler, senior technical editor,Solid State Technology

August 3, 2009 – FEI Co. recently released its Tecnai Osiris scanning/transmission electron microscope (S/TEM). The product includes ChemiSTEM technology, which reduces the time for large field-of-view elemental mapping from hours to minutes (see video below). The microscope is designed to combine this capability with ease-of-use to meet the requirements for both high-volume industrial and multi-user research laboratories.

The company says it is addressing the need for an S/TEM that provides the ease-of-use of EDX analytics with an elemental mapping speed comparable to STEM imaging that is driven by the continuing decrease in device sizes and proliferation of new materials in semiconductor manufacturing. An additional driving factor is the appearance of more samples with unknown composition in multi-user research facilities.

Joseph Race, product marketing manager in FEI’s electronics division, told SST that the ChemiSTEM technology enables the new system to achieve a factor of 50 or more enhancement in speed of energy dispersive x-ray (EDX) elemental mapping, by combining technical advances in beam generation with disruptive changes in EDX signal detection.

Key to the product’s enabling technology is its X-FEG high brightness electron source and Super-X, a new EDX detection system based on silicon drift detector (SDD) technology. Race noted that the X-FEG (Schottky FEG), which is in use at 10 FEI end-user sites, has a high total current yet is stable and has a long lifetime (see figures).

The Super-X detector has a collection angle of 0.9srad (steradians) and a throughput rate of >240kcps. It also corrects for specimen drift. The pixel dwell time can map down to 10μ s/pixel and features a windowless design with shutters.

The system also has a SmartCam remote control camera that enables experts to provide remote guidance in multi-user or industrial facilities to less experienced operators. — D.V.

Figure 1. HRTEM of 45nm PMOS w/ X-FEG. (Source: FEI Co.)
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Figure 2. HRSTEM of 45nm PMOS w/ X-FEG. (Source: FEI Co.)
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