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Training Record


The following staff and students have read and discussed the Covid-19 risk assessments which have been implemented in the Surface Group:

Aleks Boldin, Martin Spangenberg, Chris Benjamin, Tom Rehaag, Alan Burton, Ibrahim Elhoussieny, Marc Walker

covid poster

You may ONLY use equipment in the Surface, Interface & Thin Film Group if you have been properly trained. This training includes background reading (so you know the principles behind different instruments and techniques), satisfactory risk assessment, AND hands-on training with me and/or an experienced operator. You may also have to do Departmental training to underpin certain tasks, e.g. liquid nitrogen handling for Hall measurements.

Full training on very complex machines such as MADGEneto is likely to take several months but you may be signed off to perform a subset of tasks.

For training on UHV systems you will be introduced to a series of tasks with increasing complexity, e.g. sample transfer to the FEC, FEC pump-out and venting, sample transfer to a main chamber, sample annealing, ion sputtering, etc. These will be demonstrated, then you will undertake the task yourself under my supervision, then you will undertake the task with another experienced user... then you are considered trained.

Project students: you MUST include all the UHV procedures for which you have been trained in your project risk assessment and update it when you learn a new task, e.g. you may include the task "Ion Sputtering on UHV system MADGE" for which the risk assessment will include high voltages and gas handling.

If in doubt or you if get stuck: ASK.

Vacuum system training guide

EXPERT USERS - typically postgraduate students, postdocs. Unless you are an experienced UHV researcher, you must take my MPAGS module on Vacuum Science as well as doing face-to-face system-specific training with me.

NON-EXPERT USERS - typically undergraduate project students. You must do face-to-face system-specific training with me and undertake guided learning in vacuum science, which may involve accessing MPAGS course material. You are not allowed to use the UHV systems without me or another expert user being available, and you must only undertake procedures for which you have been trained.

This is an outline of the topics covered in UHV training.

  • Theory of vacuum, vacuum pumps, vacuum gauges, UHV cleanliness requirements, forbidden materials for UHV.
  • Link between vacuum regimes, pump type, gauge type and system design.
  • Vacuum fittings: conflat and Klein systems. Swagelock for gases, liquids and vacuum.
  • Sample plates and sample transfer. Spot-welding and indium-soldering samples.
  • Theory of thin film growth: evaporation/sublimation of materials, molecular beams, flux measurement, sticking coefficient, memory effect.
  • How effusion cells, Knudsen cells and e-beam evaporators work.
  • How gas sources (cracker, ion gun) work.
  • Gas handling on vacuum systems: from regulator to UHV.
  • High voltages on vacuum systems: understanding earthing, emission/drain current vs. filament current, specific units (e.g. X-ray source, ion pump).
  • Electron guns and X-ray / UV sources for vacuum. RHEED and LEED.
  • The scanning tunnelling microscope.
  • Hemispherical energy analysers and how XPS works.

The training record and competency summary documents are kept on the Surface Group Teams filespace.