Measurement Techniques Available at the MINAXS Beamline

Users of MINAXS beamline are going to attack a wide number of scientific problems. The goal is to offer the users a wide variety of experimental techniques that are not possible in small laboratories. We believe that users will benefit from the use of the state-of-the-art techniques possible only at the MINAXS beamline combined with the immediate possibility to characterize the samples also with direct methods before or after the x-ray measurements.


Small-angle X-ray scattering tomography measurements will be available in the first experimental hutch. With a small beam of only tens of micrometers in size very accurate structural information can be obtained from the inner parts of the samples. For an example, see the publication by Schroer et al.[1] about μSAXS tomography of a polyethylene block.

[1] C. Schroer et al., Appl. Phys. Lett. 88 (2006), 164102. (Abstract/Full text)


Grazing-incidence small-angle x-ray scattering is a rapidly growing characterization method by which surfaces of samples can be accurately characterized. [1] The x-ray beam of a few micrometers in size in experimental hutch 1 will allow also GISAXS studies over very small areas of sample at a time. With an optical microscope the interesting area of the sample can be selected and then scanned with the x-ray beam. The GISAXS technique can also be used to take a statistical average over a larger sample area using a large x-ray beam that is already available at the BW4 beamline at the DORIS synchrotron nearby. Partially combined operation of the beamlines could be an option in the future as the plan is to operate the related beamlines at DORIS and PETRA with the same group of SAXS and GISAXS specialists.

[1] S.V. Roth et al., Appl. Phys. Lett. 88 (2006), 021910. (Abstract/Full text)


Ultra-small angle x-ray scattering will be possible at the MINAXS beamline due to the segmented flight tube construction, which allows to vary the sample-to-detector distance from 0 to 10 meters.


Closely related to the μGISAXS technique, an atomic force microscope is planned to be installed onto the beamline. The combined use of direct microscopy methods and indirect scattering methods is going to promote understanding on the structure of the sample. It will be a unique chance to characterize the same part of the sample with multiple methods. The AFM is planned to be used in situ in both experimental hutches so that the sample could be measured with AFM and x-rays nearly simultaneously.

Optical Microscope

'One picture tells a thousand words.' Sometimes a picture of the micrometer scale structure can give understanding of the nanometer scale structure. The optical microscope is useful also for the mounting of very small samples to sample holders and for other similar activities. A magnification upto 2500x is available in the lab. In EH1, a magnification of upto 500x at a working distance of 85mm is possible.

Infrared camera

With a remotely controlled infrared camera the temperature gradients in the sample and in the sample environment can be monitored during heating and cooling measurements.


In situ Imaging ellipsometry measurements are designed to be combined with the μGISAXS measurements in EH1. Ellipsometry is a technique in which changes in the polarization state of light reflected off the sample surface are interpreted. Using the technique the dielectric properties of the sample surface can be characterized. The setup was designed and constructed in collaboration with the group of Prof. Dr. Peter Müller-Buschbaum from the Technical University of Münich.

[1] S.V. Roth et al., J. Phys.: Cond. Matter 23 (2011),254208. (Abstract/Full text)

In-situ sputter deposition

A novel in-situ sputter deposition chamber has been designed for high-throughput experiment. It allows for several different sources to be used.


Combined SAXS/WAXS experiments using the microbeam are possible. The 2theta range covered is approx. upto 22degree.

Scanning Nanodiffraction WAXS/SAXS

Both, the nanofocused beam and the ability to precisely position and move samples at the EH2 combine into Scanning Nanodiffraction (SXND). This technique provides structural information with sub-µm resolution from crystalline and semi-crystalline materials (e.g. metals, biomaterials, synthetic compounds). For example, grain orientation, residual stress profiles, crystal structure or texture can be obtained in a nondestructive analysis. This technique can be applied to static samples as well to in situ sample environments.