Lab Tour

At the lab we have our own equipment for optical imaging and spectroscopy, comprising different experimental setups:

Magneto-optic spectroscopy lab.

IMG_5995 (1000x1500)
Magneto-optic spectroscopy form UV to near IR (wavelength range ~ 300 – 1200 nm). Measurements of Kerr/Faraday rotation and ellipticity and magnetic circular dichroism from 8 K up to 320 K, and with magnetic fields up to ~ 2 Tesla.

 Confocal microscopy lab

IMG_6007 (1500x1000)
High-resolution imaging (below the micron) based on confocal microscopy with polarized light contrast. It allows obtaining mappings of rotation/ellipticity and circular dichroism, as well as linear dichroism effects. These possibilities are exploited to perform magnetic as well as ferroelectric domain imaging.


Kerr microscope/Radiation Leakage microscopy

IMG_2192 (1)
Diffraction-limited imaging of magnetic and ferroelectric domains. It can also be adapted to work as a leakage radiation microscope, for the visualization of plasmon propagation in real space, as well as in reciprocal space (frequency vs wavevector dispersion relations).



Other experimental setups can be accessed through the Scientific and Technical Services @ICMAB:


Equipments to develop photolithographic experiments. The photolithography laboratory is isolated from the UV-light, with the possibility of working either with yellow or red light. The laboratory is equipped with a fume hood with spinner and hot plate to perform deposition, curing of the photoresist and the subsequent development of the exposed motif. A Microwriter from Durham Magneto Optics LTD., which is assembled with UV-laser diodes, is devoted to write directly on the photoresist (without using masks), giving high resolution patterns.


Electron-beam lithography & SEM

The FEI Quanta 200 FEG is a state of the art field emission microscope that allows nanometer level inspection of materials.
It is equipped with a field emission gun (FEG) for optimal spatial resolution. The instrument can be used in high vacuum mode (HV), low-vacuum mode (LV) (water vapour injection), and environmental SEM mode (ESEM). This makes it possible to study samples in pressures up to 5 Torr. It is engineered to provide maximum data with non-destructive analytical techniques- imaging and microanalysis – from all types of specimens, with or without preparation. The microscope is equipped with an Energy Dispersive X-ray (EDX) system for chemical analysis. Qualitative and quantitative analysis, elemental mapping and linescans can be performed. Lithography and nano-lithography can be performed by a RAITH e-beam.


Thin Film Lab

he deposition techniques are pulsed laser deposition (PLD) for oxides and sputtering for metals. Currently there are two PLD set-ups installed, and in short time both systems will be connected to a chamber with several sputtering units. PLD is a physical vapour deposition technique that uses ultraviolet laser radiation to vaporize material that is transferred to the substrate. The plot in Figure 1 is a sketch illustrating a PLD set-up.


Scanning Probe Microscopy

The Scanning Probe Microscopy Laboratory is a 28m2 facility located inside the Institute of Material Science of Barcelona. The service is focused in providing state-of-the-art technologies to characterize materials at the nanoscale. Based in the SPM principale, the service is specialized in providing reliable, fast and low cost Topography images as well as advanced modes. We can perform the following experiments:
– Dynamic and Contact Atomic Force Microscopy
– Piezoresponse Force Microscopy
– Electrostatic Force Microscopy
– Kelvin Probe Force Microscopy
– Scanning Thermal Microscopy (from 2Q 2016)
– Current Atomic Force Microscopy
– Photoconductive Atomic Force Microscopy.


Low temperature and magnetometry


The Service is equipped with two SQUID based magnetometers (Quantum Design MPMS system), devoted to magnetometry measurements

Two Quantum Design PPMS systems are devoted to electrical transport measurements, as well as magnetometry measurements.


X-ray diffraction Lab