Hiden Analytical Unveils Advanced Detection of Silicone Contamination in Industrial Applications
Hiden Analytical, a leading provider of materials analysis and diagnostics solutions, has unveiled a significant advancement in detecting and analysing silicone contamination across various industrial sectors. The company's latest breakthrough sheds light on the critical issue of Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) contamination, a prevalent silicone-based compound found in a wide array of products including lubricants, cosmetics, food additives, and sealants.
While PDMS is generally considered inert, non-toxic, and non-flammable, it poses substantial risks in certain industrial processes. It can degrade into silicon dioxide, potentially forming an insulating layer in electronic components and impeding adhesion in surface bonding applications. Moreover, due to its resilient nature, removing PDMS contamination is notoriously challenging, making it a significant concern in various industries. As PDMS is highly mobile on surfaces, incomplete removal may necessitate recoating after cleaning.
Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) represents a highly effective method for detecting PDMS contamination, even when present in minute quantities, as thin as a single molecule layer. However, traditional SIMS techniques have been associated with high costs, limiting their application to only the most valuable products. Hiden Analytical has developed cost-effective instrumentation utilizing SIMS technology, capable of swiftly detecting silicone presence without requiring the component to be placed inside the instrument's vacuum chamber.
One key advantage of using SIMS is its ability to analyse the resulting silicon dioxide layer even after PDMS degradation, allowing for precise measurement of the damaging glass layer's thickness.
Dr Graham Cooke, Principal Scientist at Hiden Analytical, emphasised the significance of understanding and addressing industrial contamination for maintaining manufacturing quality and efficiency. He highlighted the advanced depth resolution of their SIMS technology, which can detect nanoscale features and provide detailed insights into contamination effects.
This achievement underscores Hiden Analytical's dedication to assisting industries in addressing microscopic contaminants' challenges. The application of SIMS, particularly in semiconductor manufacturing and other sectors requiring high-purity materials, demonstrates the technology's potential in enhancing quality control and product integrity.
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