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PART ll} Division-Level Reviews Part I of this report presents the overall assessment of the NIST Measurement and Standards Laboratories. Part II provides a laboratory-level assessment of each individual laboratory. This part presents a technical review at the division level for each laboratory. Chapter 9 Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory: Division Reviews Chapter 10 Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory: Division Reviews Chapter 1 1 Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory: Division Reviews Chapter 12 Physics Laboratory: Division Reviews Chapter 13 Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory: Division Reviews Chapter 14 Building and Fire Research Laboratory: Division Reviews Chapter 15 Information Technology Laboratory: Division Reviews 85
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9 Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Division Reviews ELECTRICITY DIVISION Technical Merit . The Electricity Division's work encompasses the development and maintenance of national electri- cal standards. It aims to identify needs related to electrical standards that have the highest economic impact, require support to industry, and meet the deliverables appropriate to the overall division mis- sion. Six fields of technology are affected by the work of the division: national electrical standards, low- frequency systems, electric power, display metrology, electronic data exchange, and semiconductors. There is some concern within the panel that important elements of the division's efforts, while clearly of value to the broadly stated goals of its mission and supported by its management, are inadequately reflected in the division's mission statement. These elements include standards and metrics for flat panel displays, standardized systems for the digital transfer of electrical and mechanical manu- facturing data, and the maintenance of a sound database of information pertinent to NIST through the organized, electronic capture of data. As in the past, the division conducts its business in a manner that supports its stated mission. In accord with the division' s strategic planning, its three groups were reorganized this past year into four groups: the Electronic Instruments and Metrology, Fundamental Electrical Measurements, Electrical Systems, and Electronic Information Technologies Groups. Eleven major projects (see the subsections below) are supported by the work of these groups. The panel commends the Electricity Division of the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Labora- tory (KEEL) for its management approach. Last year's reorganization of the division's efforts was aimed at better allocation of available resources, which resulted in some redirection. This process was conducted NOTE: Chapter 2, "Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory," which presents the laboratory-level review, includes a chart showing the laboratory's organizational structure (Figure 2.~) and a table indicating its sources of funding (Table 2.~. 87
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88 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 in a manner that effectively utilized staff input, and it continues to be perceived by the staff as a positive exercise. Management is currently building on these efforts with review and planning activities that will maximize the adaptability of the division while retaining its ability to meet its traditional and established responsibilities. The balance that has been achieved between these two occasionally conflicting objec- tives appears to be well considered and effective. The status of client services continues to evolve. The panel observed services that were in the process of elimination as well as new services that had been developed in response to clients' requests. In both cases there was clear evidence that clients were being consulted throughout the process. In the opinion of the panel, the strategic decisions of the division's management and staff have considerably improved the division's ability to meet its goals and objectives while maintaining its overall level of technical merit. An example of the division's overall approach can be seen in its yearly pamphlet, which describes each project and enumerates a number of specific short- and long-term objectives. In its consultations with staff, the panel found that these objectives represent realistic goals and plans and are considered seriously. Although there may be occasional questions by staff about the value of the time spent producing these documents, such questions are to be expected from a committed staff determined to maximize the level of its efforts. The effort put into this planning and documentation, however, is of considerable value and should be recognized. In the following subsections, details of major projects in the division are discussed in order to illustrate the high quality and technical merit of its work. Electronic Kilogram The objectives of the Electronic Kilogram project are the realization of the electrical unit of voltage and an investigation of an alternative definition of the unit of mass that is based on measured quantities determined by the fundamental physical constants of nature. The unit of mass is currently based on a physical artifact, whose copies differ by non-negligible amounts. Numerous national bureaus of stan- dards are making efforts to replace these artifacts. The program at NIST is at the forefront of such efforts and retains U.S. leadership in the field of standards. The level of both technical skill and design creativity for this project is exceptionally high. The experimental setup is an exceedingly difficult apparatus to develop and refine. The project combines the use of a number of existing electrical standards (the volt and the ohm) in order to generate a known force through means of a complex, yet fundamentally deterministic, magnetic system. The instrumentation has recently undergone a series of technical improvements, including the redesign of various elements. The benefits of these changes are expected to be established through testing that will occur shortly. The level of technical skill and expertise brought to the project is clearly evident in the identification and subsequent elimination of a number of design elements that contribute to systematic errors in the system. This is the sort of measurement system that NIST can be proud of, for the system is clearly a leader among the various efforts in the world. Voltage Metrology The Voltage Metrology project maintains the U.S. legal volt and disseminates the unit as an interna- tionally consistent, accurate, reproducible, and traceable voltage standard that is readily and continu- ously available for the national scientific and industrial base. NIST has historically been one of the world leaders in the determination of the volt and has led the way in the development of hysteretic Josephson arrays, which are in use in most technologically developed countries around the world.
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS 89 Besides simply maintaining and disseminating the volt, this project has continued to refine the Joseph- son array device and to reduce its size and complexity so that it can be used as a portable device. It is now clear that interlaboratory comparisons based on traveling Zeners are limited primarily by the instability and noise of the Zener diode transfer devices. The project has developed and tested a portable Josephson array standard. Recent publication of these results indicates an improvement of about a factor of 10 over conventional traveling Zeners and provides this improvement directly to NIST's most important clients. Interesting studies about the spectral analysis of typical Zener devices are under way. This work promises to help optimize the measurement conditions but also serves as a valuable educa- tional tool for clients of the Voltage Metrology project. The project is utilizing a programmable array for the voltage calibration services provided to its customers. KEEL enjoys a steady demand from its customers for calibration of saturated cell voltage standards. At one time it was hoped that the evolution of the Zener diode reference standards might improve the state of the art and make high-level voltage calibrations much easier. However, over the years the Zener-based devices have shown unpredictable noise characteristics, which diminish their value as a highly stable voltage standard. The development and testing of the programmable Josephson array have uncovered a number of minor technological problems, most of which are now solved, illustrating improved collaborations with the NIST Boulder campus. Single Electron Tunneling The goal of the Single Electron Tunneling project is to develop applications for single-electron tunneling (SET) technologies, which are relevant to high-precision electrical metrology. A recent col- laboration with the capacitive standard effort in Gaithersburg has resulted in advances in the state of the art for determination of frequency dependencies inherent in capacitance measurements; these advances are fundamental to this project. The limited level of staffing available for this work makes it essential to secure and maintain strong networks. Effective collaboration with NIST Boulder as well as work with a group in Japan and with investigators at the University of Maryland have all proven effective. Metrology of the Ohm The Metrology of the Ohm project maintains the U.S. legal ohm through distribution of an interna- tionally consistent, accurate, reproducible, and traceable resistance standard that is readily and continu- ously available for the U.S. scientific and industrial base. NIST continues to be a world leader in the realization of the ohm through state-of-the-art technology such as the quantum Hall (QH) resistance device. The QH devices are manufactured by NIST. However, these current devices degrade over time, so NIST has had to work diligently to ensure that there is an adequate supply of them. The level of signal produced by the QH devices is very small and difficult to use. In addition, the system to realize the ohm through the device is expensive and difficult to use. The Metrology of the Ohm team has taken on the task of trying to develop a QH device that will be less expensive and easier to use. If successful, this project may make it possible to do QH resistance work in the field. Over the whole range of resistance measurements, NIST has always had a world-respected reputa- tion. If NIST could be faulted, it would be related to its slowness to utilize cryogenic current compara- tors and other developments in resistance metrology. It is pleasing to see that this situation is changing. This project's recent focus on high resistance is beginning to reap dividends. Improved scaling to 1 megaohm using a new cryogenic current comparator, stable resistance standards with much-improved temperature coefficients, higher-value Hamon transfer standards, and the active-arm high-resistance
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9o AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 bridge are all significant developments. Taken together, they redefine NIST preeminence in high- resistance metrology. AC-DC Difference Standards and Measurement Techniques The AC-DC Difference Standards and Measurement Techniques project exists to provide U.S. industry with a link between direct current (DC) and corresponding alternating current (AC) electrical standards and to maintain and improve national standards for measuring DC and AC differences. The project team has undertaken a number of innovative development projects designed to utilize state-of- the-art thin-film approaches and technologies in order to facilitate the production of standards. This is a very challenging technical task, and there has been significant progress in a number of directions. Based on the achievements of this group, it is clear that the technical skill and commitment of its personnel are of the highest caliber. Impedance and AC Ratio Standards The Impedance and AC Ratio Standards project maintains and disseminates the U.S. legal farad and relates that unit to the International System (SI) of units. It provides the U.S. industrial base with consistent, reproducible, reliable, and traceable electrical calibrations in these areas. Recent work on improving the accuracy of frequency dependence measurements of capacitors is a significant advance not only for U.S. manufacturers but also for the metrology community as a whole. Many other countries trying to solve similar problems will welcome these results. The calculable capacitor continues to be the focus and foundation of this project. It is important not just as the fundamental capacitance standard but also in its role in the "quantum triangle," linking the single-electron tunneling, watt-balance, Josephson, and quantum Hall experiments. Other advances, such as the new straddle bridge for measuring voltage ratio, augment and improve the measurement and scaling of the AC impedance units and emphasize the high motivation, originality, and competence of the staff. The initiation of an AC quantum Hall resistance experiment places NIST in the company of only four other laboratories in the world, demonstrating that NIST is seriously addressing these measurement challenges and is committed to moving beyond its past successes. Electric Power Metrology The Electric Power Metrology project exists to maintain and disseminate precise electrical measure- ments for the nation's electric power transmission and distribution systems and various industrial high- energy power applications such as welding. It maintains standards for power and energy and provides calibration services for AC and DC, electric power and energy, and other electrical purposes. The panel commends the project team for maintaining close ties with industry and other standards organizations and for its leadership in these relationships. The project shows a management commit- ment to satisfying both its major clients and overall NIST objectives. Its technical achievements are significant and are respected nationally and internationally. Developments such as the distorted power test are not just technically innovative but also tailored to be of immediate service to NIST's clientele. The project's calibration services continue to be in demand and without any significant complaints. In general, this project seems to have struck a good balance between ever better identification of uncertain- ties and satisfaction of clients' needs.
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS Time Domain Measurements 91 The Time Domain Measurements project exists to expand and improve present NIST time domain waveform measurement services to support high-performance samplers and digitizers, as well as fast pulse and impulse sources, operating at frequencies from DC to 50 GHz. The work of this project team clearly lies at the limit of what is achievable with current instrumentation. The personnel in the project team have been able to develop methods permitting the calibration of a commercially available instru- ment to such a degree that the instrument can then be used as a tool for the calibration of other instruments. The expertise and technical capability demonstrated in this work are exemplary. This project' s efforts in support of NIST' s homeland security work have been extremely valuable, leading to the development of guides and published standards for metal detectors. Flat Panel Display Metrology The objective of the Flat Panel Display Metrology project is to develop robust, reproducible, and unambiguous metrology methods to characterize electronic displays, particularly flat panel displays (FPDs) to support the domestic industry of display users. The project involves the development of patterns for display measurement and the revision of International Organization for Standardization (ISO) visual-display ergonomic standards. Other current work has a focus on homeland security. These efforts involve the development of measurement techniques dealing with reflectivity and with a liquid lens that can distinguish features in shadow in a high-contrast field of light and dark. The Flat Panel Display Metrology project is creating standard approaches to measuring display characteristics. Despite the long time that displays have been in existence, the technology is in its infancy. Expensive techniques are used in industry to measure display characteristics; the results from manufacturer to manufacturer are ambiguous in many cases. The NIST team has found inexpensive ways to make the same measurements and has developed standards for metric measurement methods (as opposed to metric standards). The expectation is that through standardization of measurement methods that produce unambiguous results, standard sets of metrics will evolve. It is noteworthy that this project team is applying creative techniques to the needed development of low-cost and effective metrics. Industry is responding positively to this work. NIST should continue this project, which has such high leverage in terms of output versus manpower. The aims of the project should be embodied in the division mission statement. Infrastructure for Integrated Electronic Design and Manufacturing The objective of the Infrastructure for Integrated Electronic Design and Manufacturing project is to actively contribute to the technical development of neutral product data exchange specifications, manu- facturing specifications, and component information infrastructure for the electronics industry. The project focuses its efforts on two areas: Electronic Commerce of Component Information (ECCI) and Internet Commerce for Manufacturing (ICM). The skill base for this project requires knowledge of digital systems and software development. As technology advances in ways that permit the digital transfer of electrical and mechanical manu- facturing data, the need for standardized ways to represent the data becomes an imperative. To let these techniques develop in a random manner puts the United States at a competitive disadvantage. The panel commends NIST for recognizing the need for this project.
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92 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 The project is at a critical stage of development requiring high skill levels of professionals. The state of the art for electronic design and manufacturing does not have standards for representing electrical and mechanical manufacturing data to create the much-needed infrastructure. The infrastructure depends on such standard representations and libraries of component parts, which contain the detailed data. There are at present many such libraries and data representations, with no single standard. The industry may never be able to reach agreement on such standards, but NIST as a neutral body with the integrity and knowledge to minimize the disarray can be a positive, industry-wide force. An alternative approach to reaching industry-wide agreement would be to make known the various infrastructures and data repre- sentations and then to create a basis for transformations among the data representations. The NIST project is attempting to address many aspects of this problem area. The NIST participants have the knowledge base to contribute solutions. The NIST ECCI and ICM focus areas within this project are recognized as extremely important by the electronics industry. The fact that numerous standards groups meet frequently to reach agreement in these areas exemplifies the importance of the work. Standards group meetings sponsored by the Elec- tronics Industry Association (EIA) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) as well as many industry ad hoc standards groups are well attended by industry representatives. Because of the technical skills and neutrality brought to standardization efforts by NIST scientists in this area, they are welcomed and encouraged by industry. Within some standards organizations, the NIST personnel assume a leadership role. Knowledge Facilitation The Knowledge Facilitation project provides a formalization to achieve secure and cost-effective means of data collection and dissemination. The three stated objectives of this project are as follows: · To eliminate paper-intensive and manual operations by automating tasks, decreasing the admin- istrative requirements of the technical and support staff, increasing responsiveness to customers, and implementing a secure NIST paperless environment. · To provide information technology security policies, procedures, guidelines, and baselines and ensure compliance with Government Information Security Reform Act (GISRA) requirements. · To develop and refine a workflow application to enable the automatic tracking of technical and administrative calibration information. The first objective is actually a mission statement encompassing the other two objectives; the second objective relates to homeland security; the Information System to Support Calibrations (ISSC) satisfies the third objective, by reducing the percentage of time that NIST scientists and support staff spend producing the necessary calibration forms and associated reports. The Knowledge Facilitation project addresses a key need in the complex world of NIST and has to be shown explicitly as part of the NIST mission. The skill base for this project requires knowledge of digital systems and software development. Progress in this project significantly improves the ability to manage calibration data, to report calibration work, and to interact with NIST customers with respect to calibration data. An outgrowth of this work is its logical extension to capturing technical report references in a consistent database to greatly simplify browsing and access. The concepts embodied by this project should be captured in the division mission statement. NIST is to be commended for formalizing this critical project. The Knowledge Facilitation project has been developed nearly to the point that one of its deliverables, the ISSC, will be moved to another NIST area, Technology Services, which has the ability to call on experts should problems arise. ISSC capabilities are now accessible throughout the division and KEEL.
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS Program Relevance and Effectiveness 93 A major activity of the Electricity Division is the maintenance of highly accurate and reliable electricity standards. These standards enable robust measurements of the entire range of electrical quantities that are needed to support commercial infrastructures and technology development as well as advanced investigations at academic institutions. Representations of the volt and ohm are the practical means through which NIST's electrical units are maintained. Participation in international comparisons and linkage to national traceability systems are also key to NIST' s fulfillment of metrology obligations and to the preservation of the prestige and respect it receives from other countries and metrology organizations. The maintenance of the legal unit of the volt and its dissemination are at the heart of the charter of NIST. The development and implementation of a reliable current standard are also clearly consistent with the division's central mission. This effort combines project work with efforts necessary to implement the use of the current standard: the development of a stable capacitive standard. While this project involves significant technical risk, success would essentially be revolutionary in the field of electrical standards. Other important projects within NIST are also dependent upon the Josephson junction array voltage standard work carried on by the Voltage Metrology project. For example, the watt-kilogram experiments in both the United States and France are using Josephson array devices built by the NIST Voltage Metrology team. Metrology of the ohm and resistance calibration services likewise are part of NIST' s core business and are key to U.S. industry. Realizing the value of the ohm is an essential component in the foundation of international trade. While stark numbers may often misinterpret relevance, the large number of resistance calibrations is surely a positive indicator that NIST's Metrology of the Ohm project is extremely relevant to U.S. industry. The work of the AC-DC Difference Standards and Measurement Techniques project is fundamental to the use of electric power. Nearly every type of industry using electric power or electronics in any form has some need for accurate measurement based on thermal converters and AC current shunts. These needs vary widely in terms of both the frequencies and the amounts of current involved and create a critical need for standards and calibration services covering a wide range of both frequency and current domains. The perpetuation of a dependable, consistent, and traceable standard for the farad will continue to be a core priority for the Electricity Division. There are only about five calculable capacitors in routine operation in the entire world; the NIST system claims to be the best and so far has been able to substantiate those claims. This unique situation enhances NIST's international reputation but also im- plies additional responsibility for maintaining the current level of accuracy. The division is currently engaged in extending the range and accuracy of capacitance measurements. Generally, NIST's capabili- ties meet industry needs but do not exceed them by a large margin. The Impedance and AC Ratio Standards project's recent studies into the frequency dependence of standard capacitors illustrate that the project is responsive to U.S. clients' needs and demands. Conventional power measurements and their dissemination are handled competently and profes- sionally by the division. Power and energy metering has undergone several improvements. The power calibration facilities have been upgraded with more modern equipment. Tests of distorted power to the 50th harmonic have been developed to answer demands for traceability and calibration. Two projects, those on power quality and high voltage, are under consideration for discontinuation because they no longer appear to be of interest to the division's clients. Of particular note in the area of conventional power measurements is a small project focused on communication security within the power distribution grid. The approach undertaken was to develop a tool characterizing the varying real-time latency timings of control communications primarily of remote
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94 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 power-producing facilities. This tool should help the industry assess the impact of such things as denial of service within control loops that stabilize and equilibrate the national grid of electrical power. Recently increased attention to counterterrorism has focused on this vulnerability to our electrical energy distribution system, and its impacts on homeland security are direct and potentially enormous. The Time Domain Measurements project focuses on electrical measurements at timescales at the limit of present instrumentation. This work currently supports a very large industry dependent on the special need to interface electrical components and instruments with high-bandwidth optical communi- cations. The metrology for flat panel displays is still in the infant stage. NIST is providing a much needed function by bringing industry and consumers together to work on the problem while contributing positive steps in the evolution of that metrology. NIST experts have developed a set of measurement techniques that will ultimately lead to metrology standards for flat panel display. While industry is willing to accept the techniques, it is not yet ready to accept certain standards. Nonetheless, the value of this work is recognized, given that a NIST-supplied, complete set of patterns for display measurements and the setup for all pixel-array formats currently in use (approximately 40,000 patterns) have been accepted by the Video Electronics Standards Association. The Flat Panel Display Metrology team has 1 ~ 1 ~ Of . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . a... . . also developed a unique approach to photographing high-contrast scenes, using a llquld-lllled lens, so that the features of a face in shadow can be seen even when the background is very bright (a normal camera does not "see" the face in shadow, showing just a silhouette). This approach is being applied to homeland security measures. The work being done by the Infrastructure for Integrated Electronic Design and Manufacturing team is very significant and of great importance to the electronics industry. Standards for the description of electronics data are imperative in order for the United States to maintain and enhance its position worldwide in the electronics industry. The team consists of both experienced and relatively young researchers. As they develop the infrastructure, their enthusiasm for the task leads to rapid learning and understanding of the issues involved and the types of solutions needed. As the electronics industry is evolving rapidly, the problems are not "solved" instead, researchers are hard-pressed to keep up with solutions for the evolving problem set. As the team's understanding of a problem grows, the recognition of solutions that need work in order to be implemented also grows. Thus, an adequate staff of research- ers is essential. In the present NIST climate, maintaining an adequate research staff for this project is difficult. The Knowledge Facilitation project members continue to remain involved with industry standards organizations. Their industry colleagues recognize the work of these individuals at NIST. The team has developed software tools to manipulate the data contained in an IPC (an industry standards organiza- tion) standard format. The project members interact with such industry standards groups as the Interna- tional Electrotechnical Commission TC93, the Electronic Design Automation Standards Technical Commission, IPC, and the IEEE Computer Society Design Automation Standards Committee. The work performed by NIST covers an important, yet small, part of the total problem space. One of the key efforts under way concerns an experiment: international interoperability testing of electronic compo- nent information and dictionary harmonization. An electronic component information dictionary is key to the ability of semiconductor and electronic parts producers and users to communicate what is available and what is needed in future products. At present, there are many such dictionaries, and harmonization is crucial. Other tasks concern manufacturing information chain management and Web infrastructures to enhance B2B and e-manufacturing processes. The ISSC has already demonstrated its significance and cost-effectiveness, as exemplified by its widespread acceptance and use throughout NIST. A Web-based bibliographic database, which is a
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS 95 natural follow-on to the ISSC, is now being developed. This database will provide a consistent and efficient method for searches of papers published within KEEL. The security of data and access to data also constitute a major focus of the project. This focus relates strongly to the topic of homeland security. Division Resources The funding level of the division has been relatively constant over the past 7 years, but since the cost per employee has risen, it is difficult to keep the same number of technical staff. The overhead has also increased. This situation has led to manpower shortages in several important areas. Funding and the loss of two key professionals are having a negative impact on the ability of the sparse crew in the Infrastructure for Integrated Electronic Design and Manufacturing project to cover the territory. Morale is also being affected. Though the members of the project team are dedicated and highly enthusiastic, they feel that they are lacking the critical mass to do their job well. The Voltage Metrology project has had a steady workload fully occupying the small staff of two people. The panel continues to have some concern that there is insufficient other staff having the required capabilities to act as backup for the existing staff. Cross-training is still being considered, but an additional half-person in technical support is sought. There is no extra capacity on this team should any new projects need to be addressed. The less-than-optimal progress in the Single Electron Tunneling project can be linked to staffing shortages. A significant impediment to the project resulted when leaks in an essential piece of equip- ment occurred and it was necessary to divert the research of a central investigator to do repairs. Efforts have been made to add staff; however, staffing levels throughout the division are stretched dangerously thin, making it difficult to provide additional staffing for any project. It is expected that more staff would help to alleviate some of the difficulties facing this project. Both the Metrology of the Ohm and the Voltage Metrology projects are funded and staffed at minimal levels, but the addition of new technical support has brought renewed optimism and direction into this work. The Voltage Metrology project continues to have inadequate clean electric power, which is essential for the services it provides. Although a reliable backup power generator is now available, the harmonic distortion of the regular power still needs to be addressed. While the present resources seem just adequate to maintain the calculable capacitor for the Imped- ance and AC Ratio Standards project's work, further advances of this instrument, AC quantum Hall resistance measurements, and automated systems, as well as the upcoming move to the Advanced Measurement Laboratory, will severely tax the project's manpower and financial resources for a couple of years. This project has generally sufficient resources, both in equipment and personnel, to perform its routine maintenance and requested calibration services. The adaptation to the AML and to NIST's internal quality system will be a heavy, but temporary, strain for perhaps the next 24 months. The panel is concerned about the small number of permanent staff within the project and about the ability of the project to maintain a knowledge base sufficient for the smooth continuation of project objectives. Some additional technical assistance was requested for one subproject. Perhaps the biggest concern with respect to the electric power work was the inability to be respon- sive to the rapidly changing electric power industry an industry that is drawing considerable public and government attention. The challenges for a deregulated electric power industry, and in turn for NIST, are not yet fully understood, but NIST's ability to meet these needs as they arise, let alone to provide leadership within the industry. is very limited. ~ ,, , Although current levels of staffing and equipment in the Time Domain Measurements project are
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116 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 highlights of division work and supports publication downloads. The division continues to participate in standards bodies and literally to set the standard for quality in the optoelectronics industry. Overall, the division has made great progress over the past year, met the milestones highlighted in its overview document, and made significant progress toward its longer-term goals. The Optoelectronics Division has been extremely responsive to the recommendations from the FY 2002 assessment. Some examples include the increased calibration services for higher-power fiber-coupled power meters. The panel had recommended extending the capability to 0.5 W to support the developing industry sector for Raman amplifiers and Raman pump lasers. The division now supports this high-power calibration. In addition, the panel had recommended that the high-speed photodetector calibration services be extended from 65 GHz to 1 10 GHz. The division has extended its calibration services to 1 10 GHz and in addition supports both amplitude and phase measurements. The panel had recommended increased research and outreach in the area of polarization mode dispersion measurement and emulation. Researchers from the division have greatly increased their visibility into and reputation in the field by attending special symposia and leading industry workshops in this important field of study. The panel had encouraged a wider dissemination of results, and a Web site has been set up to serve this purpose. Highlights indicating the technical merit of the division's accomplishments during the 2003 assess- ment period are presented by group in the following discussions. Optoelectronic Manufacturing The Optoelectronic Manufacturing Group develops measurement methods and provides data to support the efficient manufacture of optoelectronic devices and for fabricating advanced devices to support metrology research. Maintaining the level of excellence in the U.S. optoelectronics industry is critical during this economic downturn; the entity that maintains its capability, history has shown, will benefit most when the upturn comes. Partially owing to consistent government support, including that from NIST, the United States remains the world's leading manufacturer of optical communications components and systems for the large and still growing fiber optic communications industry. This unfortunately is not true for the semiconductor and wireless communications industries. In the area of measurement methodology, impressive capabilities to determine source gas purity have been demonstrated. This work on gas purity is very relevant, and the extremely sensitive in situ measurements, down to 20 ppb for oxygen, will be helpful to both the semiconductor and optoelectron- ics industries. Improved control of impurities in source gases is expected to increase wafer yields and to allow better control of semiconductor device characteristics. The Optoelectronic Manufacturing Group has been able to correlate phosphine purity with incorporated oxygen in molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) growth. Future work will highlight correlating gas purity with device performance and will also focus on determining concentrations of additional impurities in additional source gases. The base ringdown optical sensing technology developed for these MBE source gas characterizations should also have application in sensing poison gas and biohazards in the areas of homeland security and defense. There are a number of excellent advances in the area of device development for new metrology applications. Recent results highlighted measurements of ensembles of quantum dots as well as the demonstration of a single-photon turnstile. The ability to generate a single photon, on demand, should allow for new and fundamental advances in optical metrology and in secure communications applica- tions such as quantum cryptography. In addition to the single-photon turnstile, photonic crystal devices are being developed to help control or capture the single photons generated by the turnstile. These photonic crystals will also be used to understand metrology issues associated with photonic band gap
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS 117 materials and devices. The work on nanotechnology should be expanded because of both its relevance to the new technology thrusts of the fiber communications industry and its importance to fundamental advances in metrology. Advances in the area of nanotechnology have been supported by a competence award and should continue to be supported at a high funding level. Sources and Detectors The Sources and Detectors Group develops standards and measurement methods for characterizing optoelectronic sources and detectors. This group has three subgroups focusing on (1) continuous wave laser radiometry (2) oulsed-laser radiometry and (3) hich-sneed measurements. The Proud continues to __ _ of, ____ ~ ~ O · . . . . . -. . - · . . .. .. · . . . .. . . · . - · · . - provlcle valuable calibration services tor both the semiconductor and the telecommunications 1nclustrles. Since fees for calibration services are now allowed, these services provide an important funding base in a climate of fixed STRS/OMP funding levels. Over the past year, the Sources and Detectors Group has improved its laboratory facilities, forged stronger ties with industry (as evidenced by the increase in calibration services of 11 percent), and developed measurement and calibration services that are the world's best and NIST-traceable. Owing to the growth in the electronics industry, this group could potentially continue to increase its interaction with industry by performing calibration services for foreign industries. In addition, as the semiconductor industry continues to evolve, the group should consider the possibility of adding more wavelength capability focusing on moving toward even shorter wavelengths. The strong interaction of the Sources and Detectors Group with the optical fiber communications industry should be continued; it is clearly supporting the industry well. The source work has primarily focused on telecommunications wavelengths, providing measurement capability for "relative intensity noise," and recently improved the maximum absolute optical power calibration at the 0.5-W level for semiconductor diode pumps for erbium-doped fiber amplifiers, Raman amplifiers, and distributed Raman amplification pump diodes. The panel believes that the 0.5-W level should be increased owing to the ndustry~s use of novel types of fiber amplifiers that require even higher-power pump lasers. At a minimum, the group should aim for the 1.0-W level for next year. Detector measurements in the optical fiber communications area have focused on measuring the impulse response of ultrahigh-speed photo detectors. Over the past year, the group has extended the measurable bandwidth from 65 GHz to 110 GHz and also added the vector response to its measurement capability. This capability provides both the magnitude and phase of the frequency response of high- sneed detectors. The activity in this area could notentiallv expand to address new anolication areas of 1 ~ 1 ~ 1 1 1 . . . · . · . - · . . · . . . · . . . . Importance, SUCh as wireless commumcatlons, microwave photomcs, and test equipment development and calibration. Perhaps an industry tie-in could use NIST expertise to develop standards for the use of electro-optic sampling procedures and measurement methods for contactless wafer-scale testing for the wireless and broadband RF industries. The Sources and Detectors Group has also worked on developing better trap detectors. New tech- nology is currently under consideration for commercialization by ILX, a manufacturer of semiconductor laser-related products. Finally, the group's work in low-level pulsed radiometry will be critical for the future development of optical methods for homeland security and target identification. Panel's Recommendations. The panel supports and acknowledges the excellent work performed by the Sources and Detectors Group and makes the following recommendations for the next assessment period:
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118 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 1. Continue advances in high-speed photodiode calibrations, maintaining magnitude and phase capabilities and expanding the application areas for these high-speed devices and measurement tech- niques; 2. Expand the dynamic range of existing calibration services, including higher fiber-coupled power measurements; and 3. Develop new wavelength calibration services, especially those at shorter wavelengths, as needed by the lithography community. Optical Fiber and Components The Optical Fiber and Components Group seeks to develop measurement methods and to help industry and government laboratories with measurement and calibration needs in the areas of optical fiber and component properties. In particular, this group supports the optical fiber (light wave) commu- nications industry. Despite the depressed state of this industry over the past 2 years, it is widely acknowledged that, looking forward, information technologies and systems will play a major role in driving the economy, improving work efficiencies, and indeed, enabling hitherto unimagined functions and applications. A mainstay of the information era is light-wave communications technology, which enables cost-effective transport and distribution of massive amounts of information. When the economy regains its vigor, light-wave technologies and systems will be in great demand, and innovations and new applications will require ever-more sophisticated measurement techniques and standards. In addition to supporting the optical fiber communications industry, expertise in light-wave technologies developed in this group have immediate and direct application in the area of homeland security. Polarization-mode dispersion (PMD) is a critical property of optical fibers and components and has been an important area of contributions and accomplishments by the Optical Fiber and Components Group. This group has developed SRMs, providing traceability for first-order PMD measurements, which are now available. Present and future activities on PMD emulation and compensation, narrowband capability for PMD measurement, multiple-reflection effects, and second-order PMD measurement are all important for the development of future optical networks. Equally important is the work on chro- matic dispersion. The panel continues to encourage joint endeavors and alliances with the industry and academia in these areas of advancement. For example, a novel technique for measuring modulator chirp developed by this group is potentially the most accurate technique developed to date, and industry input on the necessary accuracy for chirp measurements should be solicited and supported. The work on wavelength standards has been outstanding and has served well the critical needs of the industry. Various SRMs are now available, and new standards are being developed for example, the novel hybrid fiber Bragg-grating/molecular-absorption wavelength reference transfer standard. The work on high-accuracy frequency comb and super-continuum noise measurement is in the arena of leading-edge techniques; the panel looks forward to interesting results and encourages collaboration with local expert groups. Optical performance monitoring without the traditional optoelectronic digital conversion and mea- surement is an area of intense endeavor in industry. The panel encourages the group to investigate how NIST can contribute to meeting the requirements and to stimulating innovation in this area. Program Relevance and Effectiveness The Optoelectronics Division has continued to support the industry through unparalleled calibration services, improving and expanding on the base of services supported. During the past year, the division
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS 119 performed more than 312 calibrations for almost 50 entities, developed a new polarization-dependent loss measurement assurance program, developed the first-ever vector frequency response detector cali- bration at 110 GHz, and improved existing calibration techniques. Improvements to the division's calibration services included an increased Q-series calorimeter range, linearity measurements for 193- nm detectors, 157-nm calorimeters, increased accuracy of measurements of relative group delay, and higher-power fiber detector calibrations. New material calibrations and measurements include deter- mining the refractive index and birefringence of AlGaN materials, characterizing the optical properties of single self-assembled quantum dots, and using cavity ringdown spectroscopy to measure water concentrations in phosphine. The quality and direction of the current work in the Optical Fiber and Components Group are world- class, and its accomplishments are critical to the development of the light-wave industry and future optical networks. Its well-noted outreach to the light-wave community (e.g., participation in standards groups, symposia, and conferences) has gained for the members of the group well-earned recognition as leaders in the field. The provision of various SRMs has served the industry well, and continuing work in this area is essential. The panel wonders if innovative means for recovering the development cost of the SRMs could be found in order to support this work. Perhaps the measurement assurance program is a good step in this direction. In the area of materials characterization, the Optoelectronic Manufacturing Group continues to set the standards for higher-purity materials and better-defined compositions. This work is extremely im- portant in supporting technology developments such as solid-state lasers for lighting, biological agent detection, and data storage. Many industry and academic customers rely on this group not only to perform the most accurate measurements, but also to provide accurate correlations between material parameters such as refractive index and birefringence, for example. In addition, the group helps main- tain industry-wide measurement consistency by sponsoring measurement round-robins and by support- ing semiconductor composition standards development. The panel is pleased to see the first SRMs for AlGaAs composition becoming available and looks forward to such continuing efforts on InGaN. The panel wonders if measurements of strain and injection-induced refractive index measurements on active components such as VCSELs (vertical cavity surface emitting lasers) might not be better done by industry or academia, since the results are highly dependent on fabrication process and structure. Finally, the Optoelectronics Division has done an excellent job of expanding its measurement techniques and calibration services to include the support of homeland defense. For example, the cavity ringdown spectroscopy techniques used to measure water concentrations in phosphine may be applied to lethal gas and explosives detection. The single-photon turnstile is expected to support work in the fields of secure communications and computing, most notably, quantum key distribution and quantum com- puting. Also, the low-level pulsed-laser radiometry services supply the armed services with calibrated systems for military applications. Division Resources The Optoelectronics Division stands out as unique when compared with other divisions within KEEL, because it is tasked with supporting the most rapidly developing and most highly diversified industrial base, the optical networking and telecommunications industry. This task offers great opportu- nities for excellent work, but it also presents challenges for balancing research and services. Supporting a growing number of evolving services while generating the new measurement techniques and standards that this dynamic industry demands is difficult, especially in an environment of flat or shrinking bud- gets. However, the panel believes that the team within the division is up to the task. The panel encour-
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120 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 ages KEEL to provide as much additional support to the Optoelectronics Division as possible, so that riskier and newer research projects may be pursued alongside continued innovations in more traditional research projects and services. Funding limitations will restrict the scope of the programs that can be supported by the division. As a result, an aggressive review of priorities and mission areas must be regularly undertaken. The division has been proactive in supplementing its budget with outside funds, but the panel believes that more base funding could be directed to this division, especially for supporting the newer and higher-risk research areas that may develop into important industry standards on a relatively short timescale. It seems reasonable that some of these new topic areas could be supported by nonbase funding, but it is also necessary for some base funding to be available for shorter-term, discretionary project development. W. bile some progress has been made tow. ard improving facilities. deficiencies continue to hamper ~ O ~ O , ~ work in the division. Upgrades and consolidation of division research areas are long overdue and should be further implemented. A highlight of the past year was the establishment of a newly renovated laser calibration laboratory. By simply moving to a new laboratory space, measurement noise was reduced by a factor of two, and calibration accuracy was therefore increased. The panel is also concerned that travel restrictions might sever the division's ties with industry. The panel is highly supportive of the outreach that the division achieves by attending conferences, giving presentations and tutorials, and organizing and attending workshops and standards meetings. The suc- cess and the impact of the work in this division on the optoelectronics industry depend on travel to industry events, and every effort should be made to ensure that these activities are supported at some level. Despite the funding challenges, the Optoelectronics Division is providing relevant and high-quality support of measurement techniques, services, and standards to the optoelectronics industry. The panel commends the division for delivering on the priorities and goals set out last year and for leveraging expertise throughout the laboratory to produce the highest-quality results. The division has done an excellent job of balancing research and services, and the staff has been proactive in applying its knowl- edge and techniques to the concerns of homeland security and defense. The panel encourages the division to be as nimble as possible in supporting new research and measurement areas in order to try to keen ahead of the auicklv developing industry. At the same time. it encourages the division to maintain 1 1 ~ 1 0 ~ O its reputation for technical excellence and to continue to support the services relied upon by the opto- electronics industry. It will continue to be difficult to set priorities relating to this diverse and ever- growing industry, but the panel believes that the division has the leadership and staff necessary to support this dynamic industry, whose recovery is so important to the future economic success of the country. MAGNETIC TECHNOLOGY DIVISION Technical Merit The Magnetic Technology Division's (MTD's) mission statement remains unchanged from last year: "To strengthen the U.S. economy and improve the quality of life by providing measurement science and technology primarily for the magnetic technology and superconductor industries." In last year's assessment, the panel recommended that the mission statement be changed to reflect the division's commitment to standards. This recommendation stands, for the panel believes that although reference to standards is contained in the expressions of the vision and goals of the division, the mission statement has a higher visibility and gives a unifying direction to standards activity. Once again, this panel
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS 12 recommends modification of the division's mission statement to include the word and concept of "standards" explicitly. The MTD consists of two groups Superconductivity and Magnetics which are divided, respec- tively, into two projects (Standards for Superconductor Characterization and Superconductor Electro- magnetic Measurements) and four projects (Nanoprobe Imaging, Magnetic Recording Measurements, Magnetodynamics, and Magnetic Thin Films and Devices). The MTD leadership has undertaken a review of current work and potential areas for growth in the division and is developing a strategic plan that could include reorganization of staff. To this end, a dialogue between management and staff members has produced a list of areas worthy of consideration for future projects. The challenge is to select from this list the areas within the capabilities and charter of the MTD that are most relevant to the needs of the customers and are consistent with the available resources. Discussions with the leadership suggest a vision for making these decisions, although details of new program emphasis and direction are still in flux. In addition, MTD leadership has looked into a strategic plan for the division, which includes a possible restructuring of the groups along different programmatic lines. The need for additional group leadership is recognized. The panel supports the concept that projects be organized more flexibly, not just with each permanent staff member being a project leader. Giving people the chance to work on several projects as team members and leaders will facilitate the growth and broadening of the staff's skills, will help lessen the feeling that one's future is tied to just one project, and will allow for flexibility in staffing new projects and winding down existing projects. The panel supports a restructuring with these objectives. It also appears that the Superconductivity and the Magnetics Groups are growing farther apart. Some attempt to build bridges between them is desirable. The proposed changes mentioned above should help facilitate this interaction. Additionally, the panel has identified several specific areas of potential collaboration between the two groups, including ballistic magnetoresistance (already identi- fied within the division), miniaturized mechanical testing of superconductors using MEMS, the apply- ing of the mechanical expertise in the superconductivity area to look into magnetostrictive materials, and standards for magnetostrictive materials. Overall, the panel finds the division to be a very enthusiastic unit with high morale and some good examples of collaboration. Notwithstanding, there are many opportunities for even greater synergy among areas of expertise, such as those mentioned above. The panel also observes that the technical quality and merit of the division's work are very good. In the following subsections, selected projects that exemplify the high technical quality and merit of the division's work are discussed, and the panel's comments are presented. Standards for Superconductor Characterization The Standards for Superconductor Characterization project has made considerable progress in the past year on issues important to the superconductor industry. The importance of the project's work and its high performance are well recognized in the community. The project team has acted as a needed measurement arbiter in ways that are valuable for industry. In the case of the need for reliable measure- ments of residual resistance ratios exceeding 500 a vital need for large-scale superconducting RF cavities much has been at stake, since only one or two companies worldwide have been able to make sufficiently pure Nb. Last year it was necessary to develop new and more reliable procedures, and the vital arbiter of these tests was NIST. Additionally, the project has helped the small superconducting industry with complex measurements (e.g., AC loss and marginally unstable, high current density
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22 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 wires), as well as providing unique, higher-temperature critical current, voltage-current characteristics that are needed for the very high field, high-stress coils that large fusion projects such as the Interna- tional Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) require. Finally, the project was able to resolve exaggerated claims of conductor performance that were being made under a Small Business Innovation Research award that others, too, thought were bogus. Excellent leadership and representation have been maintained on International Electrotechnical Commission committees. The project leader is nationally recognized as the right person for this position. Superconductor Electromagnetic Measurements The Superconductor Electromagnetic Measurements project has unique electromechanical capabili- t~es and is performing strain-related work that others in the United States are not equipped to do. The work done in this project has a worldwide reputation and is important to the Department of Energy's Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy program and its High Energy Physics program. Additionally, the staff is working on a new book on cryogenic techniques that will be extremely valuable to the research community. Nanoprobe Imaging The Nanoprobe Imaging project has continued its work on in situ measurements of ferromagnetic films using MEMS magnetometers. The MEMS magnetometer is currently being tested in an in-house magnetic deposition system. Submonolayer sensitivity has been demonstrated. Results were presented at the Magnetism and Magnetic Materials Conference in November 2002, and there are plans for testing the magnetometer in an industrial setting in FY 2003. This technology is valuable to the entire magnetic industry, including the areas of magnetic storage (disk, tape, MRAM Magnetic random access memory]) sensors, and inductors (communications), and it offers improved capability for process monitoring over traditional methods such as crystal quartz microbalances, resistivity, and others. The development in conjunction with the RF Technology and Optoelectonics Divisions of the NIST high-frequency "drop in" MEMS probe testbed to test high-frequency probes is needed in this metrol- ogy area. The SM3 program has made substantial progress with the construction and testing of a micromachined magnetic trap fluid cell. The ability to sort and store molecules should have wide- ranging applications in chemical and biological industries. This represents an area for dramatic growth, particularly in OA funding, and can leverage the existing MEMS and microfabrication expertise. The role of this area as a strategic growth area for the division should be evaluated during the restructuring of the division. Synergy with the Semiconductor Electronics Division's MEMS activities presents an opportunity to leverage resources. The MEMS Cs vapor cell for the chip-scale atomic clock is a very neat application of MEMS technology for miniaturizing precise time measurements. This clock should be very useful in the near term for homeland and military security and for wider industrial applications in which small, relatively inexpensive time standards are needed. Magnetic Recording Measurements The panel was gratified to see that magnetoresistive arrays for field mapping had been designed and built for nondestructive current measurement and forensic analysis. This application has been used in failure analysis and on-chip metrology in the semiconductor industry, as well as in areas such as relay
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS 123 aging and fault detection. These areas promise increased speed and accuracy of on-chip failure analysis, and this application is an important new direction for this division and its relevance to the semiconductor industry. Furthermore, this work is recognized to have relevance to the area of homeland security as a forensic tool. Work on the integral superconducting flux-measurement loop for absolute calibration has been dropped owing to fabrication difficulties. However, a new round-robin evaluation for remanent and saturation moment with 20 participants is under way. The panel, however, recommends that the super- conductivity flux standard be reexamined for feasibility and be pursued if this examination shows it to be warranted. In situ surface magnetometry is of great interest for characterizing the surfaces of thin magnetic layers, which are very common in data storage and other applications. Good work was done this year on spin electronics, and this activity continues to grow within the division. Of particular note are the fabrication and characterization of AglFelAglGaAs structures. This work has led to the building of a spin metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor. The panel eagerly awaits further results of this work. It is an emerging field with great potential. Magnetodynamics The Magnetodynamics project has built a CryoPIMM (pulsed inductive microwave magnetometer) for operation down to 20 K. Measurements have been made of anisotropy and damping at temperatures between 20 K and 325 K on NiFe films. A vectorized Bloch-Bloembergen (BB) equation has been used to extract parameters such as the time constant in the Arrhenius-Neel equation. This continues in the same vein as the last few Years' work. explaining and fitting the results on primarily NiFe films to 1 1 ' phenomenological equations such as Landau-Lifshitz-Gilbert (LLG) and BB. While the work in this area is authoritative and shows leadership, the panel believes that some new approaches are needed, both in theory and experiment. Along the theory lines, the panel recommends collaborating with theorists who can put the theory on a sound quantum mechanical basis and thus get a better physical interpretation of the results. In particular, it would be useful to examine the role of conduction electron scattering of magnons as the intrinsic damping mechanism in metals and to com- pare it to established theory. The CryoPIMM should present an opportunity here. Also of interest would be a comparison with micromagnetic models, with a focus on the correct value of alpha to use in micromagnetic calculations. On the experimental side, the panel has in the past recommended the examination of other materials. Some limited work has been done in this direction, but it should be expanded. Last year the panel asked that the work be extended to smaller-patterned films and to high-coercivity films for media. In response, the group has considered possible modifications to the system that would allow it to reproducibly apply the necessary high fields. The panel urges action on this issue, as medium dynamics is a very difficult measurement problem, with critical implications for the data storage industry. There may be an oppor- tunity for interactions with the Superconductivity Group on the challenge of developing adequate fields. On the smaller-patterned films, the higher sensitivity of the instrument is considered to be an advance. However, to get to the submicron sizes of interest to industries (e.g., recording heads), a thousand-fold increase in instrument sensitivity is likely to be needed. This may necessitate new measurement geom- etry such as ensembles. The panel would like to know how the higher sensitivity will be used to address the problem. The use of PIMM by several universities (the University of Alabama, University of California, San Diego, and Stanford University) and industries (Nonvolatile Electronics, Seagate) offers examples of important technology transfer.
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24 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NIST MEASUREMENT AND STANDARDS LABORATORIES: FY 2003 The new instrumentation and measurements of spin polarization in semiconductors by use of optical pumping and the Kerr effect should prove a useful tool in the development of spin electronics. The work on spin momentum transfer is also very useful to industries such as magnetic recording and MRAM. The measurements of spin transfer efficiency in several useful metals and alloys are cited as very useful to researchers and technologies. Magnetic Thin Films and Devices The work being done by the Magnetic Thin Films and Devices project concerning noise character- ization in spin valves is very relevant to the sensor and magnetic recording industry. Although today's preamplifiers filter out the hich-frecuencY components of noise. much insight into the physics of these sensors can be gained from an examination of the high-frequency spectra. In addition, as data rates increase, the high-frequency noise will be more important. The panel commends the work already done and notes that real commercial recording heads were used, as suggested in last year's report. The panel also supports the continuation of this work on current-perpendicular-to-the-plane multilayers where new noise mechanisms can be studied. The new work on nanomagnets has potential use in nanoscale memory and devices. Measurement of magnetic and transport properties will help assess the potential of these materials. An aggressive effort to increase the blocking temperatures of these materials is recom- mended. ~ ~ ___( ___ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ — —— — ——— — ———O—— —— — —1 —— — _ _ _ ~ _ _ ___( _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ~ Program Relevance and Effectiveness The panel finds that the programs of the Magnetic Technology Division are relevant to the needs of industry and various government agencies. Responses to comments in last year' s report have positively addressed many of the issues raised by the reviewing panel. Items that will need more work and clarification are reorganization, staffing, facilities, and earlier recommendations regarding examination of high-coercivity materials and collaborations with theorists. The superconductor work is well aimed at the U.S. superconductor industry and its big-project customers in the DOE laboratories. This success is exemplified by the strong external funding that the mechanical property work attracts and the wide approval given to the standards work that is being led in the United States from this division. One of the main goals of the division is the dissemination of standards to industry. This goal is particularly important in the data storage industry, but also with regard to other areas such as MRAM, sensor technology, and so on. The panel was disappointed that the superconducting flux standard did not prove to be technically feasible. It was, however, happy with the magnetic moment round-robin led by the division. Standards are also needed for magnetostriction, magnetic imaging, and so on. Standards based on quantum mechanics would be a good long-range focus for the group. Such standards would enable a substantial increase in the accuracy of the fundamental magnetic standards. This staff has members who participated on committees of ASTM, IEEE, and the National Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (NEMI) (magnetics) and several working groups of IEC TC-90 (superconductivity). The MTD has partnered or collaborated with, or had an impact on, several universities, government laboratories and agencies, and organizations within the industrial sector. In 2002, the MTD Web site was established, and new links were added. About 100 visits to this site are observed each month. The division has published numerous, quality technical articles in refereed journals. Many good publications with sizable impact on the technical community were produced in the MTD this year, including two book chapters and several invited papers. Division members regularly chair sessions of conferences such as the Magnetism and Magnetic Materials Conference and the Applied Superconductivity Confer-
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ELECTRONICS AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING LABORATORY: DIVISION REVIEWS 125 ence and serve on conference committees or act as session chairs of meetings of technical societies such as the IEEE, the American Vacuum Society, and the American Physical Society. In the area of advanced measurement methods, the division has done excellent work that is highly relevant to industry, government, and the general scientific and engineering communities. Areas rel- evant to industry include MEMS magnetometers, PIMM collaboration and measurements, probe mi- croscopy, magnetic field mapping, standards, magnetic device dynamics and noise measurements, molecular nanomagnets, measurement of spin polarization, residual resistivity ratio measurements, and strain effects in superconductors. Many of these measurements and those under development can be done in situ, with the added advantage of capturing what is happening in a process and responding quickly to any changes. This capability will be very valuable in factories of the future. All of this work features close collaboration between industrial and government partners. Areas of interest to the govern- ment include high-speed nanoscale recording systems for forensic analysis of tapes, magnetic field mapping, "spintronics" as a promising new technology, Cs vapor cell for the chip-scale atomic clock, and molecular manipulation as part of the SM3 initiative. The work under way on future research topics is very impressive. The work on spin-dependent transport in MOSFETs, quantum surface phenomena, spin momentum transfer, atomic-scale transport, and spins in semiconductors represents appropriate extensions of the core skills of the division. Division Resources This year the panel recommends further effort to consolidate the MTD's laboratories. They are now spread out over five buildings, and some of the space is borrowed from other groups and may have to be vacated. The division would benefit greatly in collaboration and interaction from being colocated. The incipient renovation of one laboratory is applauded by the panel. The panel urges continued effort in this area with respect to the other laboratories. An effort is being made to accelerate the repayment of the "loans" for the existing equipment. The panel suggests significant upgrades of the division's equipment. In particular, a new deposition system (MBE), an ion mill, and an upgrade of the e-beam facility in the clean room are encouraged. Provisions for steady infrastructure improvements are essential in the equipment budget. The panel recommends a discussion of alternatives to acquiring the needed capabili- ties, such as buy, fee for service, share, and so on. There are significant challenges to getting large pieces of equipment. Any strategic plan should include needed major equipment acquisitions projecting out for a few years. The division cannot remain at the cutting edge without constant and systematic upgrading of the experimental facilities. The superconducting effort, though very strong, is also very narrowly focused and is being carried out by two staff members who are both in the later stage of their careers. Transitioning to some younger staff is needed. Restructuring of the division may offer an opportunity to blend and cross-fertilize the Superconductivity and the Magnetics Groups more effectively. The panel believes that it is important for the MTD to undertake work in spin imaging and spin imaging standards as well as standards based on quantum mechanics. The MEMS area is an opportunity for significant growth, not for the sake of doing MEMS, but as a tool for miniaturization and for increases in the sensitivity of many of the measurements currently being done. More resources should be applied in these areas as well as to the strategic thrusts of NIST in health care, nanotechnology, and homeland security. More funding support is required for these initiatives.
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Representative terms from entire chapter: