Oil films or silicon oil type material on the VINOX microscope.

James Conway jwc at snf.stanford.edu
Wed Jun 14 18:07:46 PDT 2006

Greetings to the Ebeam Community,

All Users working in the Ebeam Lab are henceforth to be qualified and 
will need to review microscope operations procedures to utilize the 
Olympus Vinox Microscope in the Ebeam Lab.

For the last three months occasionally, more recently over the last 
three weekends, and repeatedly over several evenings this week -- I have 
come into the lab in the morning to discover that the Vinox microscope 
stage, edges of the stage, the X-Y and Focus controls are contaminated 
with a thin oily film that is difficult to remove. There have also been 
a number of times when the microscope set up has been changed in 
attempts to utilize the tool making it obvious that a person is using 
the tool but has no skill in microscopy.  The end result is that the XY 
motion control and the Z mechanical stage rack have been damaged and 
most surfaces on this tool are contaminated.

There have also been three recent incidents of person(s) unknown using 
the microscope after aqueous development (TMAH and water) from wet bench 
the developer solution has roughened the surface of the stage and sample 

My concern is that if any of this unknown oily material makes it way 
into the SEM columns or the EBL systems it will very quickly migrate 
throughout the column and contaminate the LIS Stage, laser mirrors, and 
SEM column of these systems.  This will rapidly and severely degrade the 
performance and utility of all of our Beam Tools. In essence it could 
take us down hard in just a drop of this material gets into an Ebeam 
system. Why would anyone let this happen?!!

What I need from you:
I must request that all users working in the Ebeam Lab see me and get 
checked out on this microscope before they use the tool again.  No 
I need all users to be especially careful to change their gloves before 
using the microscope each and every time they use it.
I need all users to be especially vigilant in looking for users working 
outside this lab in the main cleanroom that may be entering the Ebeam 
Lab after hours, especially over the weekends.  We need to identify the 
User(s) whom are working with oily stuff in the lab or inadvertently 
carrying these contaminants over to the Microscope from another  Lab 
before it gets into our Ebeam systems.

I cannot believe that anyone would be so careless that they could not 
notice this happening. The oily material is being left all over the 
microscope and the table surface. It is obvious from the prints on the 
stage that they are forcing the stage back and forth and not using the 
X-Y stage movement controls properly. From the hand prints on the table 
it is obvious their gloves and their wafer box are covered in this material.

All Users are again reminded that the Ebeam Lab is a restricted area in 
the Cleanroom, and only persons qualified on the Ebeam tools are to be 
coming into this area.
Only Users working in the Ebeam Tools are to be using this microscope 
and only on samples that are clean and free of residues. 
READ: ALL users doing aqueous development or other processes should be 
using the microscopes in the Cleanroom.
Finally All Ebeam users may confront and obtain the name and coral login 
of anyone coming into the Ebeam Lab unescorted. Please forward this 
information to me and I will take it up from there.

Thank you for your support!

James Conway

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