Shock Testing of Free Standing Silicon-Nitride and Beryllium Membranes

D. Brough, L. Barrett, R. Vanfleet, R. Davis, S. Liddiard, S. Cornaby, M. Coffin
Brigham Young University, US

Keywords: X-ray windows, shock test, membranes

Summary:

As micro and nanotechnology continue to advice into products, durability, reliability and robustness become important factors. One application where micro technology needs such qualities is X-ray windows. X-ray windows consist of free standing thin film membranes made from low Z elements. An ideal X-ray window is thin enough to allow for soft X-ray transmission and yet is strong enough to maintain a vacuum. X-ray windows are used to analyze samples in microscopes and hand held devices for mining and other applications. These membranes in hand held devices need to be able to withstand impacts due to dropping or jarring of the device. Shock test studies have been performed on electronics and membranes related to biological system, but literature showing the robustness of free standing membranes is not ready found. In this study free standing thin film membranes’ ability to withstand repeated shocks created by using a bar contact pendulum shock apparatus is investigated. A comparison of shock resistance of X-ray window membrane materials specifically silicon nitride and beryllium will be presented.