RESEARCH PAPERS: Analytical and Experimental Techniques

A Phase-Sensitive Technique for the Thermal Characterization of Dielectric Thin Films

[+] Author and Article Information
S. W. Indermuehle, R. B. Peterson

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Oregon State University, Rogers Hall 204, Corvallis, OR 97331

J. Heat Transfer 121(3), 528-536 (Aug 01, 1999) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2826013 History: Received August 05, 1998; Revised February 01, 1999; Online December 05, 2007


A phase-sensitive measurement technique for determining two independent thermal properties of a thin dielectric film is presented. The technique involves measuring a specimen’s front surface temperature response to a periodic heating signal over a range of frequencies. The phase shift of the temperature response is fit to an analytical model using thermal diffusivity and effusivity as fitting parameters, from which the thermal conductivity and specific heat can be calculated. The method has been applied to 1.72-μm thick films of SiO2 thermally grown on a silicon substrate. Thermal properties were obtained through a temperature range from 25°C to 300°C. One interesting outcome stemming from analysis of the experimental data is the ability to extract both thermal conductivity and specific heat of a thin film from phase information alone. The properties obtained with this method are slightly below the bulk values for fused silica with a measured room temperature (25°C) thermal conductivity of 1.28 ± 0.12 W/m-K.

Copyright © 1999 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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