A theoretical and experimental study of the influence of planar thermal barriers on photothermal reflectance microscopy signals is presented. An analytical solution is developed for the problem of vertical barriers in a semi-infinite solid and the signal contrast obtained when scanning through the barrier is discussed as a function of the thermal resistance, the thermal diffusion length, and the pump and probe beam dimensions. The shape and the width of the signal perturbation introduced by the barrier is also analyzed. For the case of slanted barriers results of finite-element calculations are presented, and the main feature of the signal when going from vertical to slanted barriers is thus shown. Finally, the theoretical predictions are compared with measurements made on Fe sintered samples. Scanning through grain interfaces revealed different signal shapes and contrast. Good agreement between theory and experiment was found when the optical contrast at the interface is negligible. Examples are shown where the thermal barrier model is no longer valid and an extended model seems to be necessary.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)