Residual stress measurement in textured thin film by grazing-incidence X-ray diffraction

C. H. Ma*, J. H. Huang, H. D. Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

193 Scopus citations


Measurements of residual stresses in textured thin films have always been problematic. In this article, a new experimental method using grazing-incidence X-ray diffraction is presented with its principles based upon the conventional sin 2 ψ method. Instead of using the Bragg-Brentano (B-B) or Seemann-Bohlin geometry, the proposed method utilizes an asymmetrical diffraction geometry for which the X-ray beam is incident at a grazing angle γ to the sample surface, while the angle ψ is the tilt angle of the sample surface as defined by the conventional sin 2 ψ method. Basic equations involved in the X-ray residual stress analysis are described, along with exemplified experimental data. Analysis shows that, for an isotropic medium, strain measured using this grazing-incidence geometry assumes a linear relationship with the geometrical parameter cos 2 α sin 2 ψ, where the angle α is a constant and is defined as the Bragg angle at ψ = 0°, θ o , minus the grazing incidence angle γ, i.e. α = θ o -γ. The grazing-incidence diffraction geometry effectively increases the irradiation volume from a thin-film specimen, thereby giving rise to higher intensity for high-angle Bragg peaks than the conventional B-B geometry. The proposed analysis has another advantage, in that the inhomogeneous sample casts little effect on the residual stress results when compared to the traditional sin 2 ψ method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-78
Number of pages6
JournalThin Solid Films
Issue number2
StatePublished - 15 Oct 2002


  • cos α sin ψ method
  • Residual stress
  • Textured thin film

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