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Optical Nanometrology

Working Group 4.23


The working group is developing, investigating and applying ultra-high resolution optical measurement methods for  measuring the size micro- and nanostructures on surfaces with structure sizes down to the sub-100 nm range.

These methods are required e. g. by the semiconductor industry for the lithographical  manufacturing of electronic devices, in optics industries for the characterisation of diffractive optical elements and in the field of modern nanotechnologies.

The main goals are the improvement of the measurement accuracy and efficiency, and the development of optical measurement methods, which can measure even very tiny structures having sizes well below the classical resolution limit (Rayleigh limit) of optical microscopy.

This work aims to provide suitable metrological solutions to meet future requirements of the named industries as well as for fundamental research in nanotechnologies.

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  • Development and improvement of optical microscopic methods for dimensional characterisation of micro- and nanostructures:

    • novel super-resolution dark field methods: AGID-microscopy
    • ultra-high resolution microscopy in the deep UV: DUV-Microscopy

  • Angular dependent (goniometric) scatterometry for dimensional measurements of periodic micro- und nanostructure
  • Angle dependend scattered light measurements (goniometric scatterometry) for dimensional measurement of periodic micro- and nanostructures
  • Measurements of grating periods by means of optical diffraction
  • Spectroscopic measurements of the polarising properties of structured surfaces to characterise the surface structures by means of spectroscopic ellipsometry and Mueller polarimetry
  • Development of optical measurement methods to characterise structures of dimensions much smaller than the used optical wavelength:
    Optical Sub-wavelength metrology or nanometrology, respectively
  • Investigation and modelling of the interactions between nanoscale structures and electromagnetic radiation including different illumination detection and imaging properties of the different measurement systems and methods with respect to applications for ultra-high resolution metrology and in close cooperation with the PTB working group Opens internal link in current windowModelling and Simulation


The working group is cooperating in research projects with international partners from
industry, universities, research institutes and metrology institutes.

Current projects:                                                                                             

Opens external link in new windowEMPIR 17FUN01: Light-matter interplay for optical metrology beyond the classical spatial resolution limits

Opens external link in new windowEMPIR 19ENG05 High throughput metrology for nanowire energy harvesting devices

BMBF-Projekt Simulation und Maschinelles Lernen für die hochgenaue dimensionale Mikroskopie

EMPIR 20FUN02 Pushing boundaries of nano-dimensional metrology by light

EMPIR 20IND04 Traceable metrology of soft-X-ray to IR optical constants and nanofilms for advanced manufacturing

EMPIR 20IND04 Metrology in manufacturing compound semiconductors for power electronics

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  • Chair and organisation of the bienual EOS conference Opens external link in new windowFrontiers in Optical Metrology
    (07. – 11. September 2020 online, technical programme)

    Next Frontiers in Optical Metrology: 2022

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