To develop a vacuum-electrospray beam source for secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), beam characteristics of charged droplets electrosprayed in vacuum were investigated in the negative-ion mode as well as the positive-ion mode. A quaternary ammonium ionic liquid was tested. Experimental results showed that there are differences as well as similarities between the positive-ion mode and the negative-ion mode. Beam current changed greatly with capillary voltage and the flow rate of the ionic liquid. Transient response analysis showed that the vacuum electrospray generated a mixed beam consisting of charged particles of smaller m=z values (m=z ∼ 10 3) and charged droplets of larger m=z values (m=z ∼ 10 5 to 10 6). It turned out that the m=z values of the charged droplets diminished with increasing capillary voltage. Using a threedimensional positioning stage, the capillary position dependence on the beam characteristics was measured. It proved to be of great importance to align the central axis of a capillary with those of apertures in order to maximize the current component of the charged droplets of the larger m=z values and minimize the ratio of the current component of the smaller m=z values. A high alignment accuracy proved to be required at small gap lengths between a capillary tip and a counter electrode.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)