Now that the launch of the XLNCE product line at Pittcon 2015 is behind them, EDAX are looking forward to communicating and explaining the analysis opportunities that the instruments offer to potential customers in the upcoming months.
Moving from strong laboratory based applications historically, the addition of the XLNCE line of Energy Dispersive X-ray Fluorescence (EDXRF) analyzers expands EDAX’s X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) portfolio into the field of X-ray Metrology for process control applications.
The SMX-BEN is the first model of the XLNCE X-ray Metrology product line being offered for non-destructive analysis of thin film layer thickness and composition measurement applications.
SMX-BEN is a versatile EDXRF analyzer designed for R&D, process development, recipe formulation, process control, and failure analysis.
The XLNCE SMX products are specifically designed for coating applications and offer large analysis chambers, with motorized and programmable X-Y-Z stage positioning. They are all equipped with the latest Silicon Drift Detectors (SDD) with an array of choices for primary filters and X-ray optics.
The SMX systems already have a strong foothold in the energy market with photovoltaic (PV) solar applications, where the measurement of multi-layered compositions such as copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) over molybdenum (Mo) is essential for the production of the solar panels.
The SMX analyzers are capable of performing coating layer thickness and composition analysis of up to eight layers and 30 elements, with thickness ranging from less than a nanometer to microns. They offer a high degree of accuracy and precision on rigid or flexible substrates, using an advanced software algorithm as the base of operation.
Even though the off-grid solar market has been on a steady rise and is being viewed as a legitimate industry with growth potential for the future, the possibilities for the XLNCE product line go beyond photovoltaic solar applications. The XLNCE products provide excellent utility for wafer metallization, rigid and flexible printed circuit board (PCB) bump analysis, corrosion protection, medical implants, thermal barriers, automotive, and many more applications where coating analysis and control are essential for performance and durability.
The desire to control manufacturing parameters in large production facilities creates a demand for in-line applications, where yield management is essential. The cost associated with production of out of specification materials justifies investment in process control instrumentation, hence an opportunity for in-line X-ray metrology tools.
The early response from the market for the XLNCE product line clearly validates a trend towards the need for an in-process instrument that complements the SMX-BEN model. This investment is based on the economics of fabricating scrap material due to process failure.
The modularity of the SMX-BEN design and its strong analysis software platform provide a base for in-line applications where the SMX systems can be utilized in production for process control, quality assurance, yield management, and failure analysis.
In the very near future, EDAX is planning to introduce the XLNCE SMX-ILH XRF system to address the market’s demand for a viable XRF tool for production, where measurement, analysis, and control of the coating composition and thickness is paramount to the quality and material specifications.
The SMX-ILH, with many practical design features, is equipped with exactly the same measurement module as the SMX-BEN. It is a platform for XRF analysis in an atmospheric environment, either nearline or in-line and provides process control and yield management for flexible web substrate materials, such as stainless steel or polyimides, as well as rigid substrates such as float glass.
The introduction of the SMX-BEN and subsequent offering of the SMX-ILH model will create many opportunities and challenges in the future. As EDAX expands its XRF product line, the company looks forward to growing and establishing a stronger presence in the industrial market place.