The National Metrology Institute of India and A Premier Research Laboratory in the Field of Physical Sciences
Center for Characterization Materials and CRMs

Characterization of various materials being developed at NPL, like thin films, nano tubes, nano rods, nano wires, composite materials for engineering applications, electronic materials for device fabrication etc. are being carried out regarding their composition, trace impurities, crystalline structure, crystalline perfection, surfaces & interfaces, at this division regularly as central facility of the laboratory. The division is also engaged in different R & D activities of its own with definite targets in tune with the research plan of the laboratory as a whole. Some of the important R & D activities of the division persued during this period is listed below:

Chemical analysis of materials which are of national interest giving services to the society, vig. i) Poly aluminium Chloride (PAC), Alumina ferric used in treatment & purifying water ii) indelible ink for electoral process, iii) gas characterization for VVIP security.

Three new solid CRMs BND 3404.01 Plain Carbon Steel composition; BND 3405.01 Plain Carbon Steel, Composition 2 and BND 3301.01 – Alumina internal standard were released during 10th Asian Symposium on Precision Forging. The LaB6 X-ray line position and line CRM is under preparation.
Detail study of nono-crystalling ZnO synthesized by sol-gel & RF sputtering process were carried out using different characterization techniques. Radiation induced paramagnetic defects in natural quartz from Brazil and Arkansas were studied by EPR spectroscopy. EPR signal pertaining to [AlO4]0 centre was observed in these samples.

A selective range temperature sensor has been developed using ferrofluid and applied for patent. The device is capable of sensing very low precision temperature i.e. 5mK in terms of mV signal generated at constant atmospheric pressure. This device has many useful applications viz. standard, calibration of thermometers, defense, medical and biomedical applications etc.

Work related to installation of New HR-TEM has been completed and the system is now operational. Fine microstructures of nano-dimensional particles, wires, rods, pores and channels in WO3 has been interpreted along with their crystallographic symmetries to understand their influence on different optical and electrochromic properties.

Various types of doped & undoped organic, semiorganic, inorganic crystals were grown and characterized by HR –XRD and other characterization techniques. Undoped, Mg doped and Mg, Nd codoped LiNbO3 single crystals grown by Czochralski technique were characterized by HRXRD. The Mg, Nd codoped crystals show better crystalline perfection. Optical transmission study shows the blue shift in the cutoff frequency in Mg doped and Mg, Nd codoped LiNbO3 crystals.

SIMS depth profiling of different electro-chemically prepared Cu-Co heterostructures were done. In this work, the idea of using SIMS was to confirm the formation of heterosturcture multi-layers and to confirm the uniformity of the deposited layers. Another objective was to check the extent of impurities and inter-mixing of Cu, Co in each layer due to the electro-chemical method of sample preparation used.

Prepared α-AL2O3 particles of sizes ≤ 20 μm for the certification and dissemination of CRM materials to calibrate powder X-ray diffraction equipment. The crystallinity of the material was improved by annealing at 1400 0C for 11 hrs. The XRD pattern was recorded with a step size of 0.0050/3 sec and specimen spinning speed of 30 rpm. The entire powder pattern shows that the material is well crystalline with FWHM of 0.0450 for the 113 diffraction peak.

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After merger of Indian reference material activity with analytical chemistry, a new activity “Chemical Metrology” has been formed with a focus on Metrology in Chemistry (MiC) for providing traceability in chemical measurements by NPLI by doing R&D in various areas in a well coordinated network mode involving many CSIR and other institutes. It envisages participating in consultative committee on quantity of matter (CCQM)/ Asia pacific metrology program (APMP) and other

Posted in: Chemical Metrology

Compositional and structural analysis of RF magnetron sputtered La3+-modified PZT thin films

Transmission electron microscope at NPL is utilized as the central facility for the characterization of materials. Different types of samples in the form of thin films and powders prepared by various techniques have been received from different groups of NPL working on the development of new materials. These samples have been characterized for their particles shape, size, distribution of particles, phase identification etc., using transmission electron microscopy technique.

Posted in: Electron Microscopy

Studied different size nano-magnetic particles to understand the change in the physical properties because large volume fraction of atoms occupy the grain boundary area. Synthesized nano particles were annealed in varying temperature. Crystallinity improves on increasing temperature 373K to 1173K for 2 hrs duration. The material remains single crystalline phase in all the temperature as shown in (Fig. 5.5).

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