There is a flood of high-tech functional devices made up of thin films. Cell phones and personal computers are integrated units of thin film devices, so are TV displays, recording media such as CD/DVD, their write/playback apparatuses, etc. X-ray measurement techniques are widely used for characterizing various thin-film materials and devices.
When a sample is “thin film,” there are precautions and constraint conditions, characteristics for a thin film. For example, when a thin film has a strong preferred orientation, only one set of specific lattice planes can be detected. This is one of the reasons why measurements of thin films are more difficult compared with that of a powder sample. This article will overview this series for the basic techniques for X-ray characterizations of thin films.