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Four Probe Method
 
  Four Probe Method - Basic Model
 

 

  Resistivity of Semiconductors by Four Probe Method at Different Temperatures and Determination of the Band-gap
 
The Four Probe Method is one of the standard and most widely used method for the measurement of resistivity of semiconductors. The experimental arrangement is illustrated. In its useful form, the four probes are collinear. The error due to contact resistance, which is specially serious in the electrical measurement on semiconductors, is avoided by the use of two extra contacts (probes) between the current contacts. In this arrangement the contact resistance may all be high compare to the sample resistance, but as long as the resistance of the sample and contact resistances are small compared with the effective resistance of the voltage measuring device (potentiometer, electrometer or electronic voltmeter),the measured value will remain unaffected. Because of pressure contacts, the arrangement is also specially useful for quick measurement on different samples or sampling different parts of the same sample.
 
 

Description of the experimental setup

1. Probes Arrangement
It has four individually spring loaded probes. The probes are collinear and equally spaced. The probes are mounted in a teflon bush, which ensure a good electrical insulation between the probes. A teflon spacer near the tips is also provided to keep the probes at equal distance. The whole –arrangement is mounted on a suitable stand and leads are provided for the voltage measurement.

2. Sample
Germanium crystal in the form of a chip

3. Oven
It is a small oven for the variation of temperature of the crystal from the room temperature to about 200°C (max.)

4. Four Probe Set-up
The set-up consists of three units in the same cabinet.

(i) Multirange Digital Voltmeter
In this unit, intersil 3½ digit single chip A/D Converter ICL 7107 has been used. It has high accuracy like auto zero to less than 10mV, zero drift of less than 1mV/°C, input bias current of 10pA max. and roll-over error of less than one count. Since the use of internal reference causes the degradation in performance due to internal heating, an external reference has been used.

Specifications

Range X1 (0-200mV) & X10 (0-2V)
Resolution 100mV at X1 range
Accuracy ±0.1% of reading ±1 digit
Stability Within ±1 digit
Input Impedance 1MW
Display 3½ digit, 7 segment LED (12.5mm height) with auto polarity and decimal indication
Overload Indicator Sign of 1 on the left & blanking of other digits

(ii) Constant Current Generator
It is an IC regulated current generator to provide a constant current to the outer probes irrespective of the changing resistance of the sample due to change in temperatures. The basic scheme is to use the feedback principle to limit the load current of the supply to preset maximum value. Variations in the current are achieved by a potentiometer included for that purpose. The supply is a highly regulated and practically ripple free d.c. source. The current is measured by the digital panel meter.

Specifications

Open Circuit Voltage 18V
Current Range 0-20mA
Resolution 10mA
Accuracy ±0.25% or ±1 digit
Stability Within ±1 digit
Load regulation 0.03% for 0 to full load
Line regulation 0.05% for 10% chang

(iii) Oven Power Supply
Suitable voltage for the oven is obtained through a step down transformer with a provision for low and high rates of heating. A glowing LED indicates, when the oven power supply is ‘ON’.

   
  Four Probe Method - Advance Model
   
  Resistivity of Semiconductor by Four Probe Method at different temperatures and determination of the band-gap
   
 
   
 

The Four Probe Method is one of the standard and most widely used method for the measurement of resistivity. In its useful form, the four probes are collinear. The error due to contact resistance, which is significant in the electrical measurement on semiconductors, is avoided by the use of two extra contacts (probes) between the current contacts. In this arrangement the contact resistance may all be high compare to the sample resistance, but as long as the resistance of the sample and contact resistance's are small compared with the effective resistance of the voltage measuring device (potentiometer, electrometer or electronic voltmeter), the measured value will remain unaffected. Because of pressure contacts, the arrangement is also specially useful for quick measurement on different samples or sampling different parts of the sample.

Description of the experimental set-up

1. Probes Arrangement

It has four individually spring loaded probes. The probes are collinear and equally spaced. The probes are mounted in a teflon bush, which ensure a good electrical insulation between the probes. A teflon spacer near the tips is also provided to keep the probes at equal distance. The probe arrangement is mounted in a suitable stand, which also hold the sample plate. To ensure the correct measurement of sample temperature, the RTD is enbeded in the sample plate just below the sample. This stand also serves as the lid of temperature controlled oven. Proper leads are provided for the current and voltage measurement.

2. SAMPLE

Germanium crystal in the form of a chip.

3. OVEN

This is high quality temperature controlled oven suitable for Four Probe Set-up. The oven has been designed for fast heating and cooling rates, which enhances the effectiveness of the controller.

4. FOUR PROBE SET-UP

The set-up consists of three units housed in the same cabinet.

(i) Oven Controller

Platinum RTD (A class) has been used for sensing the temperature. A wheatstone bridge and an instrumentation amplifier are used for signal conditioning. Feedback circuit ensures offset and linearity trimming and a fast accurate control of the oven temperature.

Specifications of the Oven
Temperature Range Ambient to 473K
Resolution 1K
Stability ±0.5K
Measurement Accuracy ±1K (typical)
Oven Specially designed for Four Probe Set-Up
Sensor RTD (A class)
Display 3½ digit, 7 segment LED with autopolarity and decimal indication
Power 150W

(i) Multirange Digital Voltmeter

In this unit, intersil 3½ digit single chip A/D Converter ICL 7107 has been used. It has accuracy, auto zero to less than 10 V, zero drift-less than 1 V/ C, input bias current of 10 pA and roll over error of less than one count. Since the use of internal reference causes the degradation in performance due to internal heating, an external reference has been used.

Specifications

Range

X1 (0-200mV) & X10 (0-2V)

Resolution

100V at X 1 range

Accuracy

0.1% of reading 1 digit

Display

3½ digit, 7 segment LED with autopolarity and decimal indication

Overload Indicator

Sign of 1 on the left & blanking of other digits.

(ii) Constant Current Generator

It is an IC regulated current generator to provide a constant current to the outer probes irrespective of the changing resistance of the sample due to change in temperatures. The basic scheme is to use the feedback principle to limit the load current of the supply to preset maximum value. Variations in the current are achieved by a potentiometer included for that purpose. The supply is a highly regulated and practically ripple free d.c. source. The current is measured by the digital panel meter.

Specification

Open Circuit Voltage

18 V

Current range

0 - 20 mA

Resolution 10 A
Accuracy 0.25% of the reading 1 digit
Load regulation 0.05% for 0 to full load

Line Regulation

0.05% for 10% changes

   
   
  Four Probe Method - Resistivity Mapping
   
 
  • Easy resistivity mapping of large sample
  • 2 – way movement with vernier scales (0.01mm)
  • Spring loaded contacts for firm connections
  • Four probe set-up for mapping the resistivity of large samples
 
     
 
The Four Probe Method is one of the standard and most widely used method for the measurement of resistivity. In its useful form, the four probes are collinear. The error due to contact resistance, which is significant in the electrical measurement on semiconductors, is avoided by the use of two extra contacts (probes) between the current contacts. In this arrangement the contact resistance may all be high compare to the sample resistance, but as long as the resistance of the sample and contact resistance's are small compared with the effective resistance of the voltage measuring device (potentiometer, electrometer or electronic voltmeter), the measured value will remain unaffected. Because of pressure contacts, and 2 way motion, the arrangement is specially useful for quick measurement on large samples at room temperature.
 
 
   
   
   
     
* Products not listed can be ordered as per request.
* Model number may subject to change without intimation