SIMS 3-D imaging of particles and other samples with a
Stadermann F. J. and Ortner H. M. (1997) In: SIMS X.
Benninghoven A., Hagenhoff B., and Werner H. W. (ed.) Wiley,
Chichester, p. 325-328.
In recent years it has been shown that 3-D imaging is a
powerful new application of secondary ion mass spectrometry. This
analytical method combines the surface imaging capabilities of SIMS
with depth profiling, creating layer-by-layer images of elemental
distributions as the primary ion beam sputters deeper and deeper into
the sample. The amount of data produced during a typical measurement of
this type can easily reach several hundred megabytes, but with suitable
imaging software it is possible to convert this information into easy
to understand three-dimensional visualizations of elemental
distributions within a given sample volume near the original surface.
When the images are created by rastering the primary beam, the
achievable lateral resolution is mostly limited by the beam diameter
which can be significantly smaller than 1 µm and the depth
resolution is only limited by the thickness of the ion beam mixing