Critical Thin Film and Composite-Coating Thickness Control with XRF

by | May 21, 2021 | Electrical

X-ray transmission-based thickness measurement can monitor changes in thickness trends in real-time through in-process implementation. The non-destructive process begins by calculating the master product’s rate of x-ray absorption. Deviations in transmission, registered in degrees of attenuation, indicate the relative thickness of subsequent products.

XRF is useful for such products as metal foil, film, non-woven fabrics, adhesive tape, electrode materials for lithium-ion batteries and the layer thicknesses and total thickness of a coated material.

The Advantages of XRF

X-ray thickness gauging uses x-ray fluorescence as a measurement tool. It was developed as an effective means of measuring coating penetration depths not found by other techniques. While non-destructive testing technologies as a whole have increased in scope over time, XRF is still an ideal tool for measuring critical quality levels in thin films and coatings.

XRF is common in such operations as general plating and aerospace, military and automotive manufacturing. Benefits include:

  • Fast and precise measurements
  • Non-destructive testing
  • Analysis of a variety of layers and compositions
  • Quick report generation

Thickness-Gauging Applications

X-ray thickness gauging can range from single-layer analysis to complex coatings built of multiple layers. Analysis can extend to composites, such as a copper, gold and cadmium composite over nickel on a base material of stainless steel. Typical coating thicknesses and XRF applications include:

  • Binary composites
  • Composite surface coatings
  • Multiple layers on a substrate
  • Thin film measurement
  • Solution analysis of plating baths
  • ASTM standard test methods, such as ASTM B568

Micro X-Ray Inc. designs and manufactures x-ray tubes and relevant solutions, such as shielded and packaged tubes, glass tubes, integrated cooling solutions and the integration of high-voltage power supplies. To learn more about the advantages of XRF for critical thickness gauging, contact the innovators at 831-207-4900 or online at today.

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