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Laboratory of Secondary Ion/Neutral Mass Spectrometry

MTA Atomki - University of Debrecen

With decreasing dimensions and increasing complexity of thin film and multilayer structures the traditional techniques for the chemical and physical characterization of materials need to be replaced by the modern techniques of physics. The quantitative composition of these structures and surface layers down to trace elements is often of crucial importance for the quality of products. Detailed knowledge here means a decisive advantage over competitors.

A Secondary Neutral Mass Spectrometer (SNMS) type INA-X (SPECS GmbH Berlin) supplemented with Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometer (SIMS) is in operation in our laboratory. It was installed together with the Department of Solid State Physics, University of Debrecen. The SNMS/SIMS machine is suitable for the following applications:

For more information visit the SNMS website.

Contact person: Kálmán VAD
vad at atomki dot hu


Molecular Beam Epitaxy System


The Nuclear Solid State Physics Group of the MTA Wigner FK RMI has installed a French made research-grade metallic MBE system, the first MBE in the country. Presently 12 atom sources is available in the ultra-high vacuum (UHV) growth chamber, which sources are located in two electron-guns and four effusion cells allowing for co-evaporation and multilayer deposition. Each e-gun contains four crucibles allowing for the growth of different systems without the need of venting the chamber. Presently Au, Ag, Al, 57Fe, Pt, Si, Cr, Pd, Cu, Fe, V and Co containing layers and their alloys may be grown.

The MTA Wigner FK RMI MBE system consists of a load-lock, a MECA-trans transport pipe, a preparation chamber and the actual (main) growth chamber. A UHV transportable suitcase can be mounted on the preparation chamber, capable of transporting a single sample in ultrahigh vacuum to another UHV preparation or analysis chamber. The system is designed to work with sub-strates of up to 2-inch diameter.

The sample preparation begins with ex-situ substrate cleaning. The substrate often needs annealing (UHV cleaning) at high temperature then the growth process starts in the main chamber often using high temperature substrates for epitaxial film growth on single crystal substrate surfaces. A cryo-shroud can be activated when the atom sources are in operation, in order to maintain UHV condition during the growth process. The growth conditions (composition of the residual gas, and the evapo-rated materials) are monitored by a Quadrupol Mass Spectrometer (QMS). The substrate holder is rotated for better lateral ho-mogeneity of the films. The thickness of the growing layer is controlled by a quartz crystal monitor, while the surface structure is monitored by Reflection High-Energy Electron Diffraction (RHEED) images atomic layer by atomic layer.

For more information visit the MBE website.

Contact person: Miklós DOLGOS
dolgos.miklos at wigner dot mta dot hu


Electron Cyclotron Resonance (ECR) Ion Source Laboratory

MTA Atomki

In the last 20 years, electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) ion sources (ECRIS) have been developed from a complex prototype to compact and high-performance ion sources for accelerators (nuclear physics) and for stand-alone applications (atomic and plasma physics). They can produce plasmas from which beams of very highly charged ions of most elements of the periodical table can be extracted. The highly ionized beams can be used directly for low energy collision investigations or (by subsequent post-accelerating) for high energy irradiations.

An ECRIS generally is a magnetic trap that confines the hot electron component of the plasma. The electrons are heated by interaction with high frequency electromagnetic waves. They are moving back and forth along the magnetic field lines during a great number of oscillations and, by space charge effects, generate the confinement of cold ions. The atoms and ions are ionized step-by-step up to higher charge states and finally electrostatically extracted from the plasma chamber.

In the Institute for Nuclear Research (MTA Atomki, Debrecen, Hungary) a room-temperature, 14.5 GHz ECR ion source operates as a stand-alone device to produce plasmas and ion beams from a variety of materials. So far H, He, N, O, Ar, Kr, Xe (from gases) and Ni, Fe, Zn, C, Cn, C60, Zn, Pb (from solids) plasmas and beams were produced. The performance of the MTA Atomki ECRIS is very stable and reproducible. It frequently serves as a test-bench for ECRIS builders and for ECRIS research and developments. The ion source was designed and built in the ATOMKI by the ECRIS team at the end of the 90s. During those years many ECR laboratories were visited and a database containing all the achievable information on other ECR sources was collected. Now our ECRIS team has knowledge in the field of designing and operating ECR ion sources, including cases of special requirements (e.g. multipurpose usage, plasmas from giant molecules/clusters, plasma diagnostics).

For more information visit the MTA Atomki ECRIS website.

Contact person: Sándor BIRI
biri at atomki dot hu


1 MV Van de Graaff accelerator

MTA Atomki

The 1 MV Van de Graaff accelerator was originally built as model for the 5 MV machine. Various tests have been performed on it, and when the 5 MV accelerator was completed it was down for a long time.

Later, when the attention of the atomic physicists was shifted to lower energies they re-discovered this old machine, and started to use it. In the last few years it is being used a few hundred hours per year. More operation also means the need of more maintenance of this machine too, which is performed by our excellent engineers and technicians.

For more information visit the VdG-1 website.

Contact person: Sándor BIRI
biri at atomki dot hu


MTA Atomki

The MGC-20 cyclotron is the largest accelerator in Hungary, and it has been operating in MTA Atomki since 1985. It was manufactured by the Efremov Institute, Leningrad (now St. Petersburg), Russia.

For more information visit the Cyclotron website.

Contact person: Sándor BIRI
biri at atomki dot hu

Other experimental facilities

HIPP is in possession of special sample preparation and characterisation equipments (magnetron sputtering equipments, evaporators, SEM and STEM electron microscopes, etc.). Moreover, it has excellent access to preparation and characterisation instruments of the four university campuses in Debrecen (as MTA Atomki is an associated member of the University of Debrecen) and the KFKI Campus hosting MTA Wigner FK RMI as well as other four physics research institutes of MTA in Budapest.