X-ray photoelectron spectrometer (XPS) Overview Surface Analytics

System: Kratos axis Nova

With XPS analysis, the chemical composition at the surface of solids (uppermost 5 - 10 nm) can be determined quantitatively. The detection of all elements (except hydrogen and helium) is non-destructive. In addition, the oxidation states of the detected elements can be assessed (Flyer XPS).

Useful tips:

Suitable samples:
  • Vacuum-resistant, metallic (also magnetic) and non-metallic solids and powders
Sample specifications:
  • Specimen diameter max. 100 mm, height max. 20 mm.
  • Larger specimens can be cut into smaller pieces and packed in e.g. clean aluminum foil
  • Qualitative analysis: Detection of all elements (except H & He) and determination of the oxidation states on the surface.

  • Quantitative analysis: Determination of the chemical composition on the surface. Detection limit 0.1 - 0.3 at% depending on measurement time and element.

  • Angle-resolved analysis: By tilting the sample, the information depth can be reduced to half. This provides information on the depth distribution of elements and oxidation states in the uppermost 5 - 10 nm.

  • Depth profiles: Sputtering with argon ions allows to remove thin layers from the surface to determine the chemical composition as a function of sample depth, e.g. for oxide layers or thin coatings (up to 1 µm thickness). Thicker layers can be analyzed by means of an oblique section.

  • Chemical microscopy: images of the element distribution or the different oxidation states with a resolution up to 3 µm or a measuring area up to 2 x 2 mm, with stitching also larger.



  • Analysis of cleanliness (resp. contaminations, stains, discolorations)
  • Surface modifications
  • Coatings etc.


  • ASTM E1078
  • ISO 14606
  • ISO 15472
  • ISO 19318
  • ISO 20903


to top