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UltraCOLD ion and electron beams for NANOscience (COLDNANO)
Start date: Feb 1, 2012, End date: Jan 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

COLDNANO (UltraCOLD ion and electron beams for NANOscience), aspires to build novel ion and electron sources with superior performance in terms of brightness, energy spread and minimum achievable spot size. Such monochromatic, spatially focused and well controlled electron and ion beams are expected to open many research possibilities in material sciences, in surface investigations (imaging, lithography) and in semiconductor diagnostics. The proposed project intends to develop sources with the best beam quality ever produced and to assess them in some advanced surface science research domains. Laterally, I will develop expertise exchange with one Small and Medium Enterprise who will exploit industrial prototypes.The novel concept is to create ion and electron sources using advanced laser cooling techniques combined with the particular ionization properties of cold atoms. It would then be first time that “laser cooling” would lead to a real industrial development.A cesium magneto-optical trap will first be used. The atoms will then be excited by lasers and ionized in order to provide the electron source. The specific extraction optics for the electrons will be developed. This source will be compact and portable to be used for several applications such as Low Energy Electron Microscopy, functionalization of semi-conducting surfaces or high resolution Electron Energy Loss Spectrometry by coupling to a Scanning Transmission Electron Microscope.Based on the knowledge developed with the first experiment, a second ambitious xenon dual ion and electron beam machine will then be realized and used to study the scattering of ion and electron at low energy.Finally, I present a very innovative scheme to control the time, position and velocity of individual particles in the beams. Such a machine providing ions or electrons on demand would open the way for the “ultimate” resolution in time and space for surface analysis, lithography, microscopy or implantation.

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