Nanoparticulate thin films have recently attracted great attention because of their importance in both fundamental research and technological applications. Platinum nanoparticles are of particular interest due to its novel properties. There is no single technique other than advanced X-ray analysis that can provide comprehensive structural information, such as crystallographic phase, film thickness, and nanoparticle size distribution etc. in a nondestructive manner. The SmartLab multipurpose x-ray diffractometer, supported by its automated Guidance™ measurement software, offers quick and easy solutions for the analysis of nanoparticulate thin films.
Figure 2. GISAXS and particle size distribution of a platinum nanoparticulate film
In the figures above, a platinum nanoparticulate film deposited on silicon is analyzed by X-ray reflectivity and grazing-incidence small angle scattering. XRR data reveals that the film is about 8.55 nm thick with an average density of 14.23 g/cm³, which is lower than the density of metallic platinum. This suggests that the film is quite porous. The complimentary GISAXS data shows that the platinum particles have a very narrow size distribution around 8.67 nm, which is about the film thickness, indicating that the film is made of only a single layer of nanoparticles. The GISAXS data also shows that pores indeed exist in the film with an average pore size of 1.52 nm, again in agreement with the density calculation from the XRR data.