Electron imaging of dielectrics under simultaneous electron-ion irradiation

American Institute of Physics
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Applied Physics, 2002, 91 (7), pp. 4479 - 4491
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We demonstrate that if charging caused by electron irradiation of an insulator is controlled by a defocused flux of soft-landing positive ions, secondary electron (SE) images can contain contrast due to lateral variations in (i) changes in the SE yield caused by subsurface trapped charge and (ii) the SE-ion recombination rate. Both contrast mechanisms can provide information on microscopic variations in dielectric properties. We present a model of SE contrast formation that accounts for localized charging and the effects of gas ions on the SE emission process, emitted electrons above the sample surface, and subsurface trapped charge. The model explains the ion flux dependence of charge-induced SE contrast, an increase in the sensitivity to surface contrast observed in SE images of charged dielectrics, and yields procedures for identification of contrast produced by localized sample charging.
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