Enhanced-Resolution Microscopy – An Introduction to AcuityXR Technology

AcuityXR™ from Bruker is an innovative optical surface profiler measurement capability. It is a combination of novel, patent-pending, Bruker hardware and software technology, enabling select models of the ContourGT™ Non-Contact, 3D Optical Surface Profilers (Figure 1) to surpass the optical diffraction limit, with unprecedented lateral resolutions that are impossible with traditional optical microscopy techniques (Figure 2).

Bruker ContourGT

Figure 1. Bruker ContourGT

Same 3D Features with and without AcuityXR

Figure 2. Same 3D Features with and without AcuityXR

Key Benefits of AcuityXR

Breaking the optical diffraction limit improves clarity, sharpness, and definition of defects, scratches, and surface texture. It also offers the following benefits:

  • Higher pixel density
  • Wider field of view
  • Dimensional repeatability on nanoscale structures improved by factor of 5
  • Provides ‘true’ dimensions of narrow features by reducing optical effects
  • Resolves features with a width of 130nm - nearly 3 times higher resolution than traditional systems

Unparalleled Interferometric Capability

Bruker offers AcuityXR as an optional capability in select ContourGT™ Non-Contact, 3D Optical Surface Profilers.

The combination of Bruker ContourGT systems and AcuityXR coupled with patented High-Definition Vertical Scanning Interferometry (HDVSI) and enhanced Phase Shifting Interferometry (PSI) measurement modes is capable of resolving features with a width of 130nm, which is an unprecedented resolution in optical microscopy and nearly three folds higher than systems not using this technology.

In addition, AcuityXR facilitates improved lateral resolution with no reduction in the field-of-view that may accompany comparable magnifications achieved by means of traditional methods.

The AcuityXR enables ContourGT systems to resolve and quantify sample areas of interest under very high magnification with reduced or no ‘stitched’ fields-of- view and significantly improved ease of use.

Improved Gage Performance

Using unique algorithms and a patent-pending iterative technique, AcuityXR coupled with feedback from the ContourGT metrology hardware systematically lowers system noise and reduces blurring effects due to diffraction on the final estimated surface height.

This improves the dimensional repeatability on nansocale structures by a factor of 5X, thereby offering a true metrology benefit as well as the ability to resolve very fine features (Figure 3).

AcuityXR capability helps resolve exceptionally fine features.

Figure 3. AcuityXR capability helps resolve exceptionally fine features.

The AcuityXR Difference

With AcuityXR, ContourGT users can achieve improved clarity, sharpness, and definition of defects and scratches, and can resolve surface textures with greater detail.

Additionally, the higher pixel density from AcuityXR facilitates resolving nanometer-level features (Figure 4), which cannot be resolved using traditional confocal or interferometric microscopy methods.

Bruker offers AcuityXR as an optional capability in ContourGT-K1, - X3, and -X8 models.

Same 2D Features with and without AcuityXR

Figure 4. Same 2D Features with and without AcuityXR

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Bruker Nano Surfaces.

For more information on this source, please visit Bruker Nano Surfaces.

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