Fabrication, characterization and modeling of single-crystal thin film calorimeter sensors

Y. Anahory, M. Guihard, D. Smeets, R. Karmouch, F. Schiettekatte*, P. Vasseur, P. Desjardins, Liang Hu, L. H. Allen, E. Leon-Gutierrez, J. Rodriguez-Viejo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Thin film based nanocalorimetry is a powerful tool to investigate nanosystems from a thermal point of view. However, nanocalorimetry is usually limited to amorphous or polycrystalline samples. Here we present a device that allows carrying out experiments on monocrystalline silicon. The monocrystalline silicon layer consists of the device layer from a silicon-on-insulator wafer and lies on a low-stress free-standing silicon nitride membrane. We applied a number of characterization techniques to determine the purity and quality of the silicon layer. All these techniques showed that the silicon surface is as pure as a standard silicon wafer and that it is susceptible to standard surface cleaning procedures. Additionally, we present a numerical model of the nanocalorimeter, which highlights that the silicon layer acts as a thermal plate thereby significantly improving thermal uniformity. This nanocalorimeter constitutes a promising device for the study of single-crystal Si surface processes and opens up an exciting new field of research in surface science.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)126-136
Number of pages11
JournalThermochimica Acta
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 20 Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Finite-element modeling
  • MEMS process
  • Nanocalorimetry
  • Surface science


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