Interview with EMIL Team
MULTITECHNIQUE ULTRA HIGH VACUUM SYSTEM - EMIL ANALYTICS PROJECT
Interview with EMIL Team
from Energy Materials In-situ Laboratory Berlin (EMIL),
Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie GmbH.
Could you shortly describe your organisation?
The EMIL lab at the BESSY II synchrotron of the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie GmbH (HZB) will consist of up to five endstations attached to a wide energy range beamline providing photons from the extreme ultraviolet/soft x-ray all the way to the hard x-ray energy range. One of the core experimental setups is a spectroscopic endstation with a UHV backbone that attaches directly to state-of-the-art, industry relevant materials deposition clusters or to smaller deposition or post- and pre-deposition treatment chambers.
What is the aim of your undertaken research?
The research at this EMIL endstation will focus on energy materials, with the initial deposition clusters being dedicated to thin-film materials for energy applications such as photovoltaics. In the future, the range of materials studied will be expanded across a wide range of topics, including thermoelectric materials, photoelectrochemical energy conversion (PEC), battery technology, energy-saving technologies, etc.
What is your organisation specifically trying to achieve with the planned research using this equipment?
From a technological standpoint, we want to create an accessible and expandable technological platform for cutting edge research with partners both within our organisation and abroad. Taking a larger view, the goal of the varied research programs will be to work toward a safer, more secure, and sustainable energy supply for the future.
Could you please say why did you contact PREVAC when choosing who would be your partner equipment supplier?
Prevac was chosen through a public bidding process. The ability to produce much of the technology in-house and to supply a completely integrated solution made Prevac an ideal partner for this large project.
What is your opinion of our approach to fulfil your needs?
From the initial discussions about instrument concept to installation, Prevac has been extremely accommodating and professional. We went through numerous design iterations and Prevac’s creative design solutions, willingness to implement desired changes, adjust construction schedules, and still install the equipment on time is a testament to their “can do” attitude.
What problems did we encounter along the way and how we worked together to resolve these?
The highly complex equipment connects industrial scale deposition equipment to high end, synchrotron-based X-ray analytics to conduct both fundamental and applied research. This required the use of standard samples ranging in size from 11 x 11 mm2 to 6 inch diameter wafers throughout the entire system. The design and construction of a unique sample separation chamber used to remove smaller samples from 6 inch wafer sized carriers allows us to spectroscopically interrogate industrial deposition processes step-by-step. The system software provides sample tracking and history throughout a system that contains multiple sample entry and exit points.
What benefit does our equipment to your research?
Ultimately we have been provided with a unique, highly flexible infrastructure to be used for fundamental and applied research. Despite being highly complex, the precision construction and automation make it friendly to users outside of our organization. The ability to add and remove various deposition and analysis tools to the system ensures that we can conduct high quality, cutting edge research for years to come.