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Cathodoluminescence Method for Analysis


Investigation of Pulse Cathodoluminescence of Substances, Development of Method, and Building of Equipment Complex for Condensed Media Analysis

Tech Area / Field

  • INS-MEA/Measuring Instruments/Instrumentation
  • PHY-SSP/Solid State Physics/Physics

8 Project completed

Registration date

Completion date

Senior Project Manager
Zalouzhny A A

Leading Institute
VNIITF, Russia, Chelyabinsk reg., Snezhinsk

Supporting institutes

  • Institute of Electrophysics, Russia, Sverdlovsk reg., Ekaterinburg


  • Technology Commercialization International Incorporated, USA, NM, Albuquerque\nTexas Technical University, USA, TX, Lubbock\nRuhr Universität Bochum, Germany, Bochum\nKEK, Japan, Tsukuba\nABB Corporate Research Ltd, Switzerland, Baden

Project summary

The objective of the Project is to build complex of equipment for pulse cathodoluminescent analysis of dielectric and semiconducting materials and their identification.

The luminescent analysis is one of the most efficient and simple methods for determination of the internal structure of dielectric and semiconducting materials. However, at present, such analysis is used rather rarely and for highly limited range of substances, because in well-known (traditional) methods of luminescence excitation, its brightness is often deficient for carrying out of complete analysis. For increase of brightness the samples are cooled to low temperatures. This results in complication of analysis process and difficulties of extrapolation of analysis results to substance, heated up to its working temperature.

Irradiation of nonmetallic condensed media (substances) with high electron flux causes excitation of energy states in crystals and transitions between states, which are accompanied by various kinds of luminescence (edge, plasmic, fundamental, impurity, etc.) in all bands (conduction, forbidden, and valence).

The very bright luminescence of solids on irradiation with high-current pulse electron beams was found recently. This luminescence was called by participants and authors of the Project (G.A.Mesyats, S.G.Mikhailov, V.V.Osipov, V.I.Solomonov. // JTPh Letters, 1992, vol. 18, #3, pp. 87-90) pulse cathodoluminescence (PCL). Further investigations showed that its brightness is 4 - 6 orders of magnitude higher than brightness of luminescence excited by previously well-known methods (V.I.Solomonov, S.G.Mikhailov, B.V.Shulgin, S.I.Krylov, A.M.Deykoon. Dopantsensitive luminescence spectroscopy of yttrium aluminium garnet by high-current electron pulses.// J. Appl. Phys., 15 February 1998, vol. 83, #4, pp. 2250 - 2255). Even these preliminary investigations shows that Project contribution to solving problems of cathodoluminescence analysis can be very large - the field of analysis application will expand; its accuracy and rapidity of performance will increase; analysis can be performed over a wide range of change of samples temperature.

In the course of cooperation between RFNC-VNIITF and IEP of UrBr of RAS carrying out of research, computation and design activities on the following directions, is assumed:

1. Investigation of basic laws and mechanisms of pulse cathodoluminescence. Carrying out of model experiments.

2. Creation of the basis of technology of pulse cathodoluminescent (including spectral) analysis of dielectric and semiconducting materials for practical application.

3. Development and building of demonstration equipment complex for pulse cathodoluminescent analysis.

The use of modern sources of pulse and repetitive-pulse electron beams and existing scientific reserve permits presently to carry out purposeful scientific investigations in the direction of building simple, efficient, and reliable equipment for rapid (tens of seconds) fundamental investigation of condensed substances. RFNC-VNIITF and IEP of UrBr of RAS have scientific reserve and equipment for commencement of such work and attainment of the goal to be sought.

For commencement of activities under the Project VNIITF has pulse and repetitive-pulse high-current electron accelerators and appropriate complexes of measuring and analytical equipment, possibilities for issue of any design documentation, mathematical providing of investigations and manufacture of any experimental equipment.

IEP has repetitive-pulse electron accelerators, some equipment and instruments for investigation of pulse cathodoluminescence of substances.

However, for providing performance of activities under this Project in full volume it is necessary to develop specialized repetitive-pulse electron accelerator, experimental equipment and technical devices for equipping with them electron accelerators in use. Moreover, it is necessary to equip laboratories of our institutes with specialized optical measuring, recording, analytical, and computer equipment.

Scientific justification of pulse cathodoluminescence method will be completed and prototype (demonstration specimen) of simple and reliable in use equipment for luminescent (including spectral) analysis of nonmetallic substances on the basis of this method will be built as a result of Project fulfilment. Such equipment will be widely used for fundamental investigations in the field of solid-state physics, mineralogy, geology, gemmology, criminalistics, customs inspection and in other applications.

During the course of these nonmilitary activities scientists and engineers from VNIITF and IEP will get into working contacts both among themselves and with colleagues from civil sectors of science and engineering of world community countries. Implementation of this Project will introduce them to the problems, which are of potential and commercial interest in the immediate future. Moreover, technology of pulse cathodoluminescent analysis of nonmetallic substances is unique and this permits to tell with certainty about the fact that activities in the direction of building commercial specimens of such equipment for the different purposes will be continued at VNIITF and IEP.

During realization of the Project we are ready to co-operate with scientific organizations and companies from Western countries and Japan. In particular, this Project is of scientific and applied interest to experts and organizations, which investigate structure and composition of substance.


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