By: Adama Innovations  05/12/2011
Keywords: Microscope, Lithography

With direct access to the world class CRANN facilities, we can fabricate and characterise custom nanostructures in diamond and other materials. Our expertise covers:

  • Nanostructure fabrication in diamond and other materials
  • Focused Ion Beam milling
  • Photo and e-beam lithography
  • Wet and dry etch
  • Thin film patterning
  • Instrumented indentation testing for local hardness and modulus mapping and thin film adhesion
  • Atomic force microscopy of surfaces and high relief nanostructures

Our services have been used by leading multinational semiconductor and high tech manufacturers. Our experience includes:

  • Fabrication and use of custom nanoindentation probes
  • Nanoindentation testing for adhesion of thin coatings
  • Nanoimprint lithography template production

Medical device industry services

We have developed several specialised capabilities to cater to the the medical device industry including

  • Thin coating property and adhesion testing on non-planar substrates including on-device measurement
  • Biocompatible polymer patterning at nanometer to micrometer scales over large areas by nanoimprint manufacturing


Our facilities include the CRANN cleanrooms and CRANN Advanced Microscopy Centre.

The cleanroom is equipped to produce device structures on wafers up to 150mm in diameter. The specification is from class 100 in the lithography area to class 10000 in the metrology and deposition areas.

  • The lithography bay is equipped with an OAI mask aligner with submicron resolution. This tool also has nanoimprint and backside alignment capability.
  • Masks can be manufactured using a Heidelberg DWL66 mask writer, which has 0.6 micron resolution. This tool can also be used to direct write a pattern to a substrate.
  • Thin film deposition is carried out in a number of tools . Metal deposition is carried out in a Temescal FC2000 evaporator and in an Edwards evaporation system. Magnetic alloy and oxide stacks are deposited in a multi-chamber Shamrock sputter tool, which also incorporates a chamber for electron-beam evaporation.
  • Wet etching is carried out in a dedicated wet station equipped with buffered hydrofluoric acid and hot orthophosphoric acid baths. This station includes a deionised water weir and quick dump rinse facility.
  • Dry etching is performed in a high density inductively-coupled plasma etch tool.
  • A nanospec is available to measure film thickness, while a DekTak can be used to measure step height.
  • Other process tools include a barrel asher, a rapid thermal annealer and a chemical-mechanical polishing system.

The cleanroom layout for Lithography, Deposition, Etch and Characterization facilities is shown opposite.

The CRANN Advanced Microscopy Laboratory (AML) is a custom built, state of the art 6,000 square foot facility, located in the Trinity Technology and Enterprise Campus, in Central Dublin. The centre houses a critical mass of high end scanning and imaging electron and ion beam microscopes for sample imaging, analytics/characterisation, and nanofabrication. The capital equipment includes a Carl Zeiss Helium Ion Microscope [HIM], an FEI Titan Transmission Electron Microscope [TEM], and five other high specification scanning electron and focused ion beam microscopes.

Highlights of our tool sets include: Focused ion beam:

Zeiss Auriga with Cobra ion column

This dual beam FIB has both field emission electron and Ga+ ion columns. The system is fundamentally designed for nanofabrication via controlled localized ion milling or ion assisted deposition, which can be simultaneously monitored with the SEM column. The microscope features a state of the art Orsay Physics Cobra ion column with a unique 2.5 nm resolution. Sub-2 nm resolution images have been performed with the gallium ion beam at 1 pA.

Technical Specifications:

  • Ion imaging resolution of 2.4 nm.
  • Electron imaging resolution 1 nm.
  • Sample preparation for TEM lamella.
  • Sequential cross sectioning for three dimensional image construction.
  • A reactive gas injection system for reactive ion etching and Pt/SiO2/W deposition.
  • Nano-manipulators dedicated to electrical measurements and TEM sample preparation.
  • Electron/Ion beam lithography, (Raith Elphy Quantum).

FEI DualBeam Strata 235

The Strata 235 is a versatile dual-beam FIB system, with a wide variety of functionality for nanofabrication and additional materials characterization capability. The system offers energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) capability. EDS provides elemental site specific information of samples operated in spot, line-scan or Z-contrast map mode. This tool is ideally suited to failure analysis and cross sectioning of a wide range of industrial samples and material sets.

  • Electron/Ion beam lithography, (Raith Elphy Quantum)
  • Transmission Electron Microscope sample preparation
  • Energy Dispersive X-ray (EDX) elemental analysis system (Silicon Drift Detector)
  • Nano-manipulators for in-situ TEM sample preparation
  • A gas injection systems which allows reactive ion etching or the deposition of metals such as platinum

Zeiss Ultra Plus - Scanning Electron Microscope

A high resolution (<1nm) Field Emission SEM with a Gemini® column is installed for imaging, and analytics. This is one of the highest resolution imaging electron microscopes available on the market, and feature STEM capability and a number of specialized detectors with sophisticated contrast and detection mechanisms.

Technical Specifications:

  • Imaging resolution of 1nm.
  • Scanning TEM imaging [STEM] to a resolution of 0.8 nm.
  • Accelerating voltages between 100V and 30kV.
  • Charge neutralization system suitable for imaging non-coated insulating materials.
  • EDX elemental analysis, imaging and mapping [Oxford Instruments INCA system].
  • Extensive electron detection system including:
  • Energy Selected Backscattered detector
  • Angular selected backscatter detector (for atomic number or Bragg scattering contrast
  • Secondary Electron detector

Dry Etch
Oxford Instruments System100 ICP180ICP180

High density ICP plasma etch tool configured for dry etching a range of materials including silicon, oxide, nitride and so on.

Technical Specs

  • OIPT Plasmalab System100 ICP180 etch tool
  • Load lock system with 200mm lower electrode
  • 3KW ICP source
  • 600W RF RIE bias power
  • He backside cooling with mechanical clamp

Atomic force microscopy
Asylum Research MFP-3D

The CRANN owned MFP-3D’s scanner offers 90um travel in closed loop mode (high position control) on the XY plane and 14um in the Z plane. A large number of imaging modes are available: contact, AC, Lateral Force, Nanolithography, EFM, Surface Potential, etc. A fluorescent microscope is coupled with this AFM. This is particularly suited for biological sample studies. This tool is extensively used for lithography, high resolution imaging and the study of living cells.

Keywords: Lithography, Microscope

Contact Adama Innovations

Email - none provided

Print this page


Other products and services from Adama Innovations



Utilising our broad range of world class nano-manufacturing and characterisation infrastructure, together with our deep expertise in nanostructure fabrication, we develop and produce unique solutions to meet emerging technology requirements.