Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 30, Issue 11, pp 2765–2768 | Cite as

Cathodoluminescence microscopy of high Tc superconducting YBCO and BSCCO materials

  • P. R. Fletcher
  • C. Leach


Spectroscopic and imaging cathodoluminescence (CL) microscopy has been used to study high Tc YBCO and BSCCO superconducting thin films and pellets in the scanning electron microscope. The effects of beam parameters, such as voltage, current, and diameter, have been investigated with a view to optimizing the CL signal intensity whilst preventing sample damage. Limiting the CL signal generation volume to within the thin film is important in eliminating any substrate contribution. Areas of strong luminescence have been observed in YBCO and BSCCO pellets as well as BSCCO thin films. At low beam energies, there is some correlation between the CL and secondary electron images. The CL spectra of the strongly luminescent spots differed from those of the poorly luminescencing superconducting phases. CL was able to identify a copper-rich impurity phase in the BSCCO material, and a barium cuprate phase in the YBCO material. It is proposed that the quality of a thin film, with respect to impurities, can be monitored using CL.


Thin Film Impurity Phase Superconducting Phasis Beam Parameter Secondary Electron Image 
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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. R. Fletcher
    • 1
  • C. Leach
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MaterialsImperial CollegeLondonUK
  2. 2.Manchester Materials Science CentreUniversity of Manchester and UMISTManchesterUK

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