a novel micro contact test station

The Plug&Probe Micro is designed to provide a symmetrically heated tool to perform easy electrical measurements on microelectrodes or thin film samples at elevated temperatures and changing gas environments.

Minimal diameter of tube:                             50 mm

Connectors:                                                      3x to10x individually shielded electrical feedthroughs with BNC plugs

                                                                          1x miniature thermocouple plug

                                                                          2x 6 mm stainless steel tubes for gas supply

Minimal contact area:                                     50 µm

Maximal temperature:                                    1050 °C (1400 °C on request)

Short circuit impedance:                                 (set-up resistance with 2 m coaxial BNC cables at room temp)

Two wire configuration:                                  ca. 2 Ω

Four wire configuration:                                 ca. 5 · 10-2

Temperature Measurement with                    thermocouple Type S (optional Type K)

Leak rate is typically:                                       ISO-KF standard 


Measurement methods: Impedance spectroscopy, Current voltage measurements, Van der Pauw, tracer exchange,



  • Very good electric shielding in all frequency ranges (reproducible measurements without electrical interferences between 106 – 10-3 Hz)
  • Minimal temperature gradients at the sample position. Therefore very sensitive samples can be measured and temperature gradient driven degradation processes can be excluded.
  • One and the same micro contact can be measured for weeks with changing temperatures and gas environments after contacted only once.
  • Very small gas volume. Smaller amount of expensive gases e.g. tracer gases are needed for one experiment.
  • Leakage rate according to KF standard. Less gas is needed for an experiment with one gas fill compared to an experiment with continues gas flow.

Open circuit impedance measured at room temperature gives ca. 1 · 1013 and ca. 1 · 10-12 F for the resistive and the capacitive part respectively. The inductive part in the impedance spectra, if visible, generally depends on the connected measurement BNC cables between the impedance analyzer and the Plug&Probe.

The Plug&Probe micro consists of a stainless steel with an interior alumina test interface using platinum wiring. The heated part of the Plug&Probe micro only consist of alumina and platinum to ensure no outgassing and to prevent any reactions between specimen and sample holder. In case you cannot use platinum in your experiment, you may want to change to another test station with different contact materials.