New device gives the best overview of composition of materials
Estonian researchers and entrepreneurs can now do in-depth analyses of the composition of various materials, especially their outermost layer. Among other functions, a new device of the University of Tartu gives feedback on the quality of nanomaterials or nanoscale surfaces.
The Institute of Chemistry of the University of Tartu bought a measuring device that cost about one and a half million euros – the device for Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (ToF-SIMS).
Sven Lange, Senior Research Fellow in Optics and Spectroscopy of the University of Tartu, said that this is the first surface analysis machine of such analysis capacity in Estonia. He believes the device will give the Estonian researchers a competitive advantage.
Lange describes that the device helps to assess various problems related to the identification and detection of positioning of both atoms and molecules on the surface of materials and close to the surface.
“For instance, the device can give feedback on the quality of nanomaterials or nanoscale surfaces created in chemical synthesis. Surfaces and surface physics are extremely important. This is one of the major fields of nanotechnology: how to make very thin surface coatings and how different coatings affect the properties of materials,” said Lange.
Lange confirms that both researchers and entrepreneurs are welcome to use the measuring device. “The result of investing so much public money must be accessible. This measuring system is definitely not anyone’s personal device, but must serve public interest.”
The device was bought from the USA as a part of the Estonian research infrastructures roadmap object “Nanomaterials – research and applications”.
Additional information: Sven Lange, UT Senior Research Fellow in Optics and Spectroscopy, tel: +372 737 4718, email: sven.lange [ät] ut.ee.