It is shown that a focused ion beam (FIB) grounding technique can be used to alleviate charge buildup on samples that would otherwise charge in the electron beam to the point where analysis by Auger electron spectroscopy (AES) was limited or impossible. FIB grounding alleviates the sample charging and permits AES analysis. The grounding technique is quick, easy and well understood as it has been used extensively for voltage-contrast analysis. The technique is shown to be useful for enabling analysis on electrically isolated conductive features as well as insulating samples.

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