Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 26(3), p. 542-549 (2011); doi:10.1039/c0ja00197j
In very recent years particular effort is being devoted to the development of radiofrequency (rf) pulsed glow discharges (GDs) coupled to time of flight mass spectrometry (ToFMS) for depth profile qualitative analysis with nanometre depth resolution of technological materials. As such technique does not require sampling at ultra-high vacuum conditions it facilitates a comparatively high sample throughput, related to the reference technique secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS). In this work, pulsed rf-GD-ToFMS is investigated for the fast and sensitive characterization of boron and arsenic ultra low energy (ULE) implants on silicon. The possibility of using a simple multi-matrix calibration procedure is demonstrated for the first time for quantification of this type of samples and the validation of the proposed procedure has been carried out through the successful analysis of a multilayered sample with single and couple 11B delta markers. Results obtained with the proposed methodology for boron and arsenic ULE implants, prepared under different ion doses and ion energy conditions, have proved to be in good agreement with those achieved by using complementary techniques including SIMS and grazing incidence X-ray fluorescence. Thus, although further investigations are necessary for more critical evaluation of depth resolution, the work carried out demonstrates that rf-GD-ToFMS can be an advantageous tool for the analytical characterization of boron and arsenic ULE implants on silicon.