Abingdon, United Kingdom
Abingdon, United Kingdom

Oxford Instruments plc is a United Kingdom manufacturing and research company that designs and manufactures tools and systems for industry and research. The company is headquartered in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, England, with sites in the United Kingdom, United States, Europe, and Asia. It is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index. Wikipedia.


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Patent
Oxford Instruments | Date: 2017-03-08

There is provided an apparatus for cyclical plasma etching of a substrate, the apparatus comprising: a process chamber; a support within the process chamber for receiving the substrate to be etched; a controller for repeatedly applying a dosing step and a bombardment steps respectively; a dosing controller for controlling the flow of a process gas in the dosing step such that the substrate is exposed to a maximum dose of process gas in use of 1000 Langmuirs and said dose is controllable within an accuracy of 1 Langmuir; and a first signal generator coupled to the process chamber and a second signal generator coupled to the support within the process chamber, the first and second signal generators being configured such that in use positions ions of an plasma active species within the process chamber have a substrate bombardment energy in the range of 10eV to 100eV which is controllable within an accuracy of 5eV. There is also provided a method for cyclical plasma etching of a substrate using said apparatus.


Patent
Oxford Instruments | Date: 2016-09-26

Apparatus and techniques presented combine the features and benefits of amplitude modulated (AM) atomic force microscopy (AFM), sometimes called AC mode AFM, with frequency modulated (FM) AFM. In AM-FM imaging, the topographic feedback from the first resonant drive frequency operates in AM mode while the phase feedback from second resonant drive frequency operates in FM mode. In particular the first or second frequency may be used to measure the loss tangent, a dimensionless parameter which measures the ratio of energy dissipated to energy stored in a cycle of deformation.


Patent
Oxford Instruments | Date: 2017-01-04

A sample holding system comprises a sample holder adapted to operate in an operational temperature range of below 1K to at least 380K. The system may also comprise a substrate support. The sample holder has a substrate in the form of a circuit board. One or more sample holder connectors are utilised for providing electrical connection to the sample holder. The sample holder has a dedicated region for receiving a sample to be studied. Electrical circuitry provides electrical connection between the said sample holder electrical connectors and a part of the sample holder, through the circuit board.


Patent
Oxford Instruments | Date: 2016-12-14

The present invention provides a method of accelerating cool down of a target member of a cryogenic system to a cryogenic operating temperature. The method comprises the steps of cooling a target region of a cryogenic system with a first cooling apparatus, the first cooling apparatus being adapted to cool the target region to a first temperature by thermal conduction between the first apparatus and the target member, and having a first cooling power at the first temperature; and cooling the target member of the cryogenic system from the first temperature to an operating temperature using a cryocooler, where the first cooling power of the first cooling apparatus at the first temperature is greater than the cooling power of the cryocooler at the first temperature. This allows a target member of a cryogenic system to be cooled more rapidly than when conventional methods are used.


Patent
Oxford Instruments | Date: 2017-02-28

A modular Atomic Force Microscope that allows ultra-high resolution imaging and measurements in a wide variety of environmental conditions is described. The instrument permits such imaging and measurements in environments ranging from ambient to liquid or gas or extremely high or extremely low temperatures.


Patent
Oxford Instruments | Date: 2017-06-21

The present invention provides a method of accelerating cool down of a target member of a cryogenic system to a cryogenic operating temperature. The method comprises the steps of cooling a target region of a cryogenic system with a first cooling apparatus, the first cooling apparatus being adapted to cool the target region to a first temperature by thermal conduction between the first apparatus and the target member, and having a first cooling power at the first temperature; and cooling the target member of the cryogenic system from the first temperature to an operating temperature using a cryocooler, where the first cooling power of the first cooling apparatus at the first temperature is greater than the cooling power of the cryocooler at the first temperature. This allows a target member of a cryogenic system to be cooled more rapidly than when conventional methods are used.


Patent
Oxford Instruments | Date: 2017-05-31

A portable analyzer for determining a composition of a sample is provided, the analyzer comprising an excitation means (210) for invoking an optical emission from a surface of the sample, a detector means (220) for observing a selectable wavelength in said optical emission and for recording a detection signal that is descriptive of at least one characteristic of said optical emission at a selected wavelength, an analysis means for determination of an elemental composition of the sample on the basis of one or more detection signals; and a control means for carrying out a spectral analysis by operating the excitation means to generate the optical emission for recording respective one or more detection signals at one or more predefined wavelengths, operating the detector means to record the respective one or more detection signals at said one or more predefined wavelengths, and operating the analysis means to determine the elemental composition of the sample on the basis of said recorded detection signals.


A method is provided of measuring the mass thickness of a target sample for use in electron microscopy. Reference data are obtained which is representative of the X-rays (28) generated within a reference sample (12) when a particle beam (7) is caused to impinge upon a region (14) of the reference sample (12). The region (14) is of a predetermined thickness of less than 300 nm and has a predetermined composition. The particle beam (7) is caused to impinge upon a region (18) of the target sample (16). The resulting X-rays (29) generated within the target sample (16) are monitored (27) so as to produce monitored data. Output data are then calculated based upon the monitored data and the reference data, the output data including the mass thickness of the region (18) of the target sample (16).


A substrate located in an energetic-beam instrument has a region of interest to be extracted as a sample for further analysis. Cuts are made in the substrate to define a sample, and a stress-buffer layer is formed over the region of interest or adjacent to it. An isolating cut is made to separate the portion of the substrate containing the region of interest from the bulk substrate; however, the isolated area remains attached to the stress- buffer layer. An end-effector, such as the probe of a nano-manipulator, is attached to the stress-buffer layer, and the stress-buffer layer is cut to free the sample. The sample may then be attached to a holder by attachment of the stress-buffer layer thereto. Thus the sample is never at the same time connected directly and rigidly to two different objects that may move relatively to one another, creating undesirable stresses in the sample.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: SGA-RIA | Phase: FETFLAGSHIP | Award Amount: 89.00M | Year: 2016

This project is the second in the series of EC-financed parts of the Graphene Flagship. The Graphene Flagship is a 10 year research and innovation endeavour with a total project cost of 1,000,000,000 euros, funded jointly by the European Commission and member states and associated countries. The first part of the Flagship was a 30-month Collaborative Project, Coordination and Support Action (CP-CSA) under the 7th framework program (2013-2016), while this and the following parts are implemented as Core Projects under the Horizon 2020 framework. The mission of the Graphene Flagship is to take graphene and related layered materials from a state of raw potential to a point where they can revolutionise multiple industries. This will bring a new dimension to future technology a faster, thinner, stronger, flexible, and broadband revolution. Our program will put Europe firmly at the heart of the process, with a manifold return on the EU investment, both in terms of technological innovation and economic growth. To realise this vision, we have brought together a larger European consortium with about 150 partners in 23 countries. The partners represent academia, research institutes and industries, which work closely together in 15 technical work packages and five supporting work packages covering the entire value chain from materials to components and systems. As time progresses, the centre of gravity of the Flagship moves towards applications, which is reflected in the increasing importance of the higher - system - levels of the value chain. In this first core project the main focus is on components and initial system level tasks. The first core project is divided into 4 divisions, which in turn comprise 3 to 5 work packages on related topics. A fifth, external division acts as a link to the parts of the Flagship that are funded by the member states and associated countries, or by other funding sources. This creates a collaborative framework for the entire Flagship.

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