Lab Instrumentation of a NanoLab


In this module, we will learn about instrumentation for working in a Nanolab.  Laboratories dedicated to Nanosciences combine equipment for both material deposition and characterization.  Deposition equipment typically includes a mix of tools to deposit thin films and nanostructures, such as vacuum based physical vapor deposition (PVD) and chemical vapor deposition (CVD) equipment as well as solution-based processes.  Likewise, materials characterization requires a suite of tools, to study a broad range of physical, chemical, electrical, and optical properties of the films, in addition to film thickness, roughness and numerous other descriptors of the materials. This module is geared for experimental research.  The aim is to provide an intuitive and in-depth understanding of Nanolab instrumentation, and also give course participants the capacity to operate such tools.  Where possible, we will introduce “low-cost” approaches to building up instrumentational capabilities.  This aspect of the course will empower students and researches to do more and also instill a spirit for constructing prototypes and demos of their research ideas.  Deposition techniques that will be discussed include: thermal evaporation, sputtering, chemical vapor deposition, spin-coating, monolayer self-assembly, silicone stamping of materials, and also some lithographic patterning such as laser writing and interference lithography.  Characterization techniques include electrical measurement tools, an ellipsometer, profilometer, thin film optical absorption, photoluminescence, and atomic force microscope.


1. Introduction to Nanolabs: material deposition and characterization.
2. Crystal growth, thin films, and lower dimensional nanostructures
3. Crystal growth
4. Vacuum systems
5. Physical vapor deposition (PVD): thermal evaporation and sputtering
6. Chemical vapor deposition (CVD)
7. Pulsed Laser Deposition
8. Solution based deposition processes (I): spin-coating, sol-gel, and drop-casting
9. Solution based deposition processes (II): adsorption, Langmuir Blodgette deposition, electrophoretic deposition, doctor blade, layer-by-layer deposition
10. Monolayer self-assembly
11. 2D material deposition: exfoliation, etc.
12. Perovskite deposition
13. Silicone stamping of materials
14. Lithographic patterning tools using laser writing and interference lithography.
15. Materials characterization to determine physical, chemical, electrical, and optical properties of the films
16. Optical microscopy: bright field, dark field, confocal, fluorescence, wide field.
17. Measurement of film thickness: ellipsometer and profilometer
18. Absorption and Photoluminescence
19. STM and AFM: topography, roughness, and much more.
20. Process control: Mass flow controllers, insitu ellipsometry
21. More exotic deposition tools: dip-pen lithography, etc.
22. Molecular Beam Epitaxy and Grapheo-epitaxy
23. Deposition and etching: nano-porous structures

Learning Outcomes 

Students will come away with a thorough understanding of instrumentation used in a lab devoted to Nanosciences. Students will learn about deposition and characterization tools, their purpose and their inner workings. The aim is that students will become comfortable with the decision making process of when to utilize one methodology or another, both for deposition related questions as well as for characterization. Where possible, students will become familiar enough with the tools that they can go forward in building their own prototype Nanolab tools.


1. Plummer, James, Michael Deal, and Peter Griffin. Silicon VLSI Technology: Fundamentals, Practice, and Modeling. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2000. ISBN: 9780130850379.
2. Campbell, Stephen. The Science and Engineering of Microelectronic Fabrication. 2nd ed. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2001. ISBN: 9780195136050.
3. Pierret, Robert, and Gerold Neudeck. Modular Series on Solid State Devices. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1982. ISBN: 9780201052879.
4. Colclaser, R. A. Microelectronics Processing and Device Design. New York, NY: Wiley, 1980. ISBN: 9780471043393.
5. Vossen, John, and Werner Kern. Thin Film Processes. Burlington, MA: Academic Press, 1978. ISBN: 9780127282503.
6. Murarka, Shyam, and Martin Peckerar. Electronic Materials: Science and Technology. Burlington, MA: Academic Press, 1989. ISBN: 9780125111201.
7. Ohring, Milton. The Materials Science of Thin Films. 2nd ed. Burlington, MA: Academic Press, 2001. ISBN: 9780125249751.
8. May, G. S., and S. Sze. Fundamentals of Semiconductor Fabrication. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2003. ISBN: 9780471232797.
9. Smith, D. L. Thin Film Deposition: Principles and Practice. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 1995. ISBN: 9780070585027.

External Evaluator 


Responsible Academic 

Senior Lecturer Yaakov Tischler (BIU)

Awarded ECTS