INA – Instituto de Nanociencia de Aragón

Thin film growth laboratory

  Thin film growth Laboratory



A thin film is a layer of material with a thickness of nanometers to several microns. They have a high interest from the research point of view, to allow us to study physical and chemical properties of quasi-two-dimensional systems.

Used as a coating to modify the physical or chemical properties of the substrate or to create superstructures with new physicochemical properties. Therefore have a wide range of industrial-level applications: microelectronics – sensors and actuators, magnetic memories, optical and opto-electronics, coatings for improved mechanical and thermal properties, corrosion / oxidation, to improve the hydrophobic properties, properties barrier packaging, biocompatibility and others.

The laboratory has four manufacturing techniques: pulsed laser ablation (PLD), sputtering (sputtering), epitaxial growth by molecular beam techniques (MBE) and chemical vapor deposition assisted by plasma (PECVD). Manufacturing techniques are scalable and reproducible.


PVD Sputtering.

NEOCERA Inc. / Built according to INA specifications.
Applications: This technique can easily deposit materials with high melting point, such as: Ceramic materials, Metals refractors, Inorganic compounds or some polymers.

Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapour Deposition (PECVD)

SISTEC / Built according to INA specifications.
Applications: Its main use is the dielectric thin layers deposition (SiO2, Si3N4, DLC) to electrically separate nanometric items.

This device permits obtaining highly uniform and low porosity dielectrics, according to the substrate topology. Furthermore this deposition occurs very fast.

Specs: This device consists of:
– Precharge chamber.
– Process chamber.
– High vacuum pumps (5 x 10-6 mbar) vacuumeter for both chambers.
– 13.56 MHz and 600 W radiofrequence generator.
– Gas lines and flowmeters.
– Waffer heating to obtain temperatures up to 350ºC.
– PC for process control.



Applications: The process of pulsed laser deposition (PLD) is based on the ultra high evaporationof the target by a pulsed laser beam energy. This combined deposition is used for the controlled growth of thin layers of metals and metal oxides.
We have a PLD and a second team that also allows in-situ deposition ofheterostructures (metal oxide) by magnetron-sputtering techniques (PLD, sputtering).
Through these techniques can obtain various structures such as high temperaturesuperconductors, diamond-like carbon structures, polymers, biocompatible materials, ceramic materials.
Specs: – Deposition chamber: Ultra high vacuum chamber made ​​of stainless steel with a base pressure of less than9x10-9 Torr. Forebay with zipper.
– PLD Carousel: Up to 6 White 1 “or 3 2” in diameter. Sample holder with heating system, with maximum temperature of 850 °C, compatible with O2.
– Laser: Wavelength: 248 nm (KrF). Maximum pulse energy: 250 mJ. Maximum average power: 5 W. Maximum operating frequency: 20 Hz.
– Sputtering: DC magnetron sputtering. Ability to three white 2 “in diameter.

Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE)

DCA / MBE M600
Applications: The M600 metal MBE is a UHV evaporation system especially designed for high quality deposition or epitaxial growth of metals, oxides and metal superlattices.

The growth chamber has two ports for single or multi-crucible electron guns and up to eight ports for effusion cells or other sources. The system can be configured for 1.5″, 2″, 3″ or 4″ max. substrate size.

The growth chamber has several ports reserved for precise flux control equipment. In the standard configuration the electron gun fluxes are controlled using quartz crystal film thickness monitors. Ports are reserved for more accurate flux control using either cross beam quadrupole mass spectrometer or atomic absorption spectroscopy.
Specs: This equipment is basically composed by:
Isolated loading chamber equipped with a front volute pump and a turbo pump (60 l /s) that allows quickly reach pressure 10-8 torr before transferring the wafer to theepitaxial growth chamber.
Growth chamber, where the structures composed of different elements, growing at adeposition rate below 0.1 nm / s. The base pressure is below 1.8 x 10-10 torr. This camera includes:
– Vacuum: ion pump (500 l / s) cooled with liquid nitrogen Criopanl internally.
– Pistol (trigger) of beam electrons with four magazines (6 kW high voltage supply) and shutter (blade) with electro-pneumatic operation. In controller thickness: QuartzMonitor integral shutter.
– Manipulator actuated rotary wafer and heater high temperature (1000 º C) with aPDI controller.
– RHEED system: gun (trigger) of15 keV, port and shutter vision to the screen.