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Spot-Analysing - Low Energy Electron Diffraction and
Surface Magneto-Optical Kerr Effect

(Dr. S. Fölsch, A. Helms, A. Riemann)

Research Fields

SPALEED is a surface-sensitive technique which utilizes the diffraction of low-energy electrons (typically 10-100 eV) at a surface. The analysis of diffraction spot profiles yields direct information on spatial correlations at the surface, i.e., the vertical and lateral atomic surface rouhgness (mean terrace sizes and number of atomic layers exposed to the surface) are determined quantitatively. The high resolution of the instrument (transfer width ~1000 ) enables an accurate measurement of lateral lattice constants. Thus, epitaxial strain and structural features of ultrathin overlayers can be determined with high precision. Our interest is focussed on the controlled modification of structure and morphology of surfaces and epitaxial overlayers. In particular, we are interested in the magnetic properties of ultrathin metal films and its interrelationship with structural and morphological features. For in situ measurements of surface- and thin-film-magnetism the system is combined with a conventional SMOKE setup.

Current activities

Recent and current activities involve


The apparatus enables combined in situ measurements of structure, morphology and magnetism of ultrathin ferromagnetic overlayers under the well-defined conditions of UHV. It features a conventional SMOKE (surface magneto-optical Kerr effect) setup for magnetic measurements and a SPALEED instrument to determine crystallographic as well as topographic properties of the surface or the growth front. Apart from these analytical techniques the setup is equipped with additional standard-type surface science tools (sample preparation, chemical characterization with XPS, MBE sources).

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