Abstract

The polarization of light scattered into directions out of the plane of incidence by polystyrene latex spheres upon a silicon substrate was measured for p-polarized incident light. The experimental data show good agreement with theoretical predictions for three sizes of spheres. These results demonstrate that the polarization of light scattered by particles can be used to determine the size of particulate contaminants on silicon wafers. Theoretical models, based on successive degrees of approximation, indicate that the mean distance of a particle from the surface is the primary determinant of the scattered light polarization for small out-of-plane scattering angles.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

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