Perspectives

Journal of Nanoparticle Research

, Volume 11, Issue 7, pp 1521-1554

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Spectroscopic ellipsometry and polarimetry for materials and systems analysis at the nanometer scale: state-of-the-art, potential, and perspectives

  • Maria LosurdoAffiliated withCNR-IMIP, National Council of Research-Institute of Inorganic Methodologies and of Plasmas Email author 
  • , Michael BergmairAffiliated withChristian Doppler Laboratory for Surface Optics, Center for Surface- and Nanoanalytics, Johannes Kepler University Linz
  • , Giovanni BrunoAffiliated withCNR-IMIP, National Council of Research-Institute of Inorganic Methodologies and of Plasmas
  • , Denis CattelanAffiliated withThin Film Division, HORIBA Scientific
  • , Christoph CobetAffiliated withDepartment Berlin, ISAS Institute for Analytical Sciences
  • , Antonello de MartinoAffiliated withCentre National de la Recherche Scientique (CNRS-LPICM), Ecole Polytechnique
  • , Karsten FleischerAffiliated withDepartment Berlin, ISAS Institute for Analytical Sciences
  • , Zorana Dohcevic-MitrovicAffiliated withCenter for Solid State Physics and New Materials, Institute of Physics
  • , Norbert EsserAffiliated withDepartment Berlin, ISAS Institute for Analytical Sciences
    • , Melanie GallietAffiliated withThin Film Division, HORIBA Scientific
    • , Rados GajicAffiliated withCenter for Solid State Physics and New Materials, Institute of Physics
    • , Dušan HemzalAffiliated with
    • , Kurt HingerlAffiliated withChristian Doppler Laboratory for Surface Optics, Center for Surface- and Nanoanalytics, Johannes Kepler University Linz
    • , Josef HumlicekAffiliated with
    • , Razvigor OssikovskiAffiliated withCentre National de la Recherche Scientique (CNRS-LPICM), Ecole Polytechnique
    • , Zoran V. PopovicAffiliated withCenter for Solid State Physics and New Materials, Institute of Physics
    • , Ottilia SaxlAffiliated withInstitute of Nanotechnology

Abstract

This paper discusses the fundamentals, applications, potential, limitations, and future perspectives of polarized light reflection techniques for the characterization of materials and related systems and devices at the nanoscale. These techniques include spectroscopic ellipsometry, polarimetry, and reflectance anisotropy. We give an overview of the various ellipsometry strategies for the measurement and analysis of nanometric films, metal nanoparticles and nanowires, semiconductor nanocrystals, and submicron periodic structures. We show that ellipsometry is capable of more than the determination of thickness and optical properties, and it can be exploited to gain information about process control, geometry factors, anisotropy, defects, and quantum confinement effects of nanostructures.

Keywords

Spectroscopic ellipsometry Polarimetry Nanomaterials Nanoparticles Thin films Optical characterization Nanometrology Review