Analytical methods can detect the outermost molecular layers of a product, including organic and inorganic materials.
Surface-sensitive methods evaluate 1 to 10 molecular layers. Some methods can be operated in a depth profiling mode by using energetic beams to remove material one molecular layer at a time. As the molecular layers are removed, the newly revealed surface is analyzed. If a sample has “macro layers” then cross-sectioning and polishing is an appropriate analytical approach.
Our scientists use the following capabilities to accomplish depth profiling surface analysis:
- X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS)
- Scanning Electron Microscopy/Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (SEM/EDS)
Because surface analysis methods detect the outermost molecular layers it is important that samples be packaged in a way as to avoid damage or contamination at the surface. Our scientists will use specimen preparation methods including microtoming, sectioning, and polishing to prepare the samples for analysis.
The sample sizes for these methods are influenced by the form sample itself with care taken to maintain a margin of material beyond the specific area to be tested.
Our scientists can provide guidance to ensure the analytical samples are properly packaged for shipping.
Contact an expter to discuss sample considerations in greater detail.
Products we’ve tested include:
- Multi-layer films
- Surface coatings
- Metalized plastic films
- Medical products for contamination
- Migration of additives to surfaces