Laboratory analysis of outermost surface layers

From surface analysis to outermost layer analysis

 material’s surface is subject to numerous interactions with its environment and dictates the specific characteristics, performance of materials as well as providing protection from exterior constraints.

Surface analyses can help resolve many physicochemical problems :

  • As part of an expertise to determine the origin of a defect (corrosion, fissure, adhesive problem, unknown pollution…)
  • To optimize your production processes (surface treatment, machine calibration…) and improve the performance of your materials
  • To inspect the quality of the surface of your materials 

Outermost surface analysis : more specific chemical characterization

Complementary to surface analysis techniques (SEM, Optical microscopy…), techniques associated with outermost layer analysis used to collect specific data identifying chemical elements and molecules in a materials surface and its close environment.

They are used as part of multisectoral investigations such as :

  • Identification of the chemical nature of a pollutant or a contaminant which could cause cleanliness problems
  • Surface characterization (passivation and functionalization) 

Our analytical services

FILAB laboratory has multisectoral expertise as well as a cutting-edge analytical fleet allowing us to reliably fulfil our clients’ requests for outermost layer analysis.

Our laboratory is able to use many complementary analytical techniques :

  • TOF-SIMS
  • XPS/ESCA

Our skills in chemistry and materials science ensure a reliable level of expertise for all your analytical needs.

Examples of problems we have solved in various fields

Medicine :

  • Inspection of the cleanliness of a Medical Device’s surface as part of the validation process for a cleaning procedure
  • Detection of residual detergents on the surface of an implant using complementary ToF-SIMS and XPS techniques
  • Characterization of the surface of a Medical Device : morphology, elemental composition, molecular characterization, detection of contaminants…

Aeronautics/Automobiles :

  • Examination of an adhesion problems in paint (XPS or FESEM elemental identification, ToF-SIMS molecular analysis…)
  • Identification of a sizing product found on the surface of fibers used to make composite materials
  • Characterization of an aluminum alloy passivation procedure 

Electronics :

  • Identification of a pollutant found on the contact surface of a glued assembly creating an adhesive problem
  • Failure analysis following a loss in performance 

Pharmaceuticals :

  • Identification of a contaminant found on the internal surface of a glass bottle
  • Outermost layer characterization of packaging with a sealing problem
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