Developed for quality control and wafer metrology in the semiconductor manufacturing market, this non-destructive technology may be highly adaptable to measuring material properties such as a coating’s thickness, thermal and electrical conductivity, and material imperfections. The technology uses two overlapping lasers to measure the thickness of metal on a substrate using the metal’s known heat conductivity and reflectivity. Depending on the metal, thicknesses from 5 μm down to 100 Angstroms can be measured. The technology is sensitive to residues and extremely fine contaminants. Voids, breaks, bridges, or connections between fine metal lines can be detected. If there is a known differential in thermal conductivity between the surface metal deposition and its substrate, metal thickness can be deduced. The nominal laser spot size is 3 μm; measurements may be made to within approximately 20 μm from the edge of a work piece.
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