The mechanical properties of ultra-thin films, thicknesses less than 50 nm, can be determined by dynamic nanoindentation. Nanoindentation was originally developed as a tool for mechanically characterizing films and coatings. Advancements in the field continue to drive the test to smaller and smaller scales. The iNano nanoindenter is routinely used to make accurate and repeatable measurements of Young’s modulus and hardness of ultra-thin films by incorporating state-of-the-art hardware, electronics, procedures and analyses.
iNano Nanoindenter for accurate measurements without substrate effects
Other commercial nanoindentation systems presume that the influence of the substrate can be neglected for thin films, those with thicknesses between 50 to 500 nm. The iNano nanoindenter automatically corrects for the influence of the substrate, so that the measured Young’s modulus and hardness are the true values for the film, independent of the substrate on which it is deposited. Quantitative scratch and wear testing give insight into real-world deformation mechanisms.
For thicker films and coatings, nanoindentation is the fastest way to measure the Young’s modulus and Vickers hardness. Testing is completely automated, because the residual hardness impression doesn’t have to be imaged. With standardized test methods for the iNano nanoindenter, the entire process, from test method to final report, is radically faster and easier than what is often expected.