A Caltech Library Service

Sputtering by Multiply-Charged Ions, and Preferential Sputtering of Isotopic Mixtures


Weathers, Duncan Lee (1989) Sputtering by Multiply-Charged Ions, and Preferential Sputtering of Isotopic Mixtures. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/5bf6-s278.


Collector-type experiments have been conducted to investigate two different aspects of sputtering induced by keV ions. The first study looked for possible ejection mechanisms related to the primary charge state of the projectile. Targets of CsI and LiNbO₃ were bombarded with 48 keV Arq+, and a Au target was bombarded with 60 keV Arq+, for q = 4, 8, and 11. The collectors were analyzed using heavy-ion Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy to determine the differential angular sputtering yields; these and the corresponding total yields were examined for variations as a function of projectile charge state. For the Au target, no significant changes were seen, but for the insulating targets slight (~10%) enhancements were observed in the total yields as the projectile charge state was increased from 4+ to 11+.

In the second investigation, artificial ⁹²Mo/¹⁰⁰Mo targets were bombarded with 5 and 10 keV beams of Ar⁺ and Xe⁺ to study the isotopic fractionation of sputtered neutrals as a function of emission angle and projectile fluence. Using secondary ion mass spectroscopy to measure the isotope ratio on the collectors, material ejected into normal directions at low bombarding fluences (~ 10¹⁵ ions cm⁻²) was found to be enriched in the light isotope by as much as ~70‰ compared to steady state. Similar results were found for secondary Mo ions sputtered by 14.5 keV O⁻. For low-fluence 5 keV Xe⁺ bombardment, the light-isotope enrichment at oblique angles was ~20‰ less than the corresponding enrichment in the normal direction. No angular dependence could be resolved for 5 keV Ar⁺ projectiles at the lowest fluence. The above fractionation decreased to steady-state values after bombarding fluences of a few times 10¹⁶ ions cm⁻², with the angular dependence becoming more pronounced. The fractionation and total sputtering yield were found to be strongly correlated, indicating that the above effects may have been related to the presence of a modified target surface layer. The observed effects are consistent with other secondary ion measurements and multiple-interaction computer simulations, and are considerably larger than predicted by existing analytic theory.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Physics
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy
Major Option:Physics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Tombrello, Thomas A.
Thesis Committee:
  • Tombrello, Thomas A. (chair)
  • Burnett, Donald S.
  • Goodstein, David L.
  • Phillips, Thomas G.
Defense Date:20 March 1989
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:10222013-084818842
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:8004
Deposited On:22 Oct 2013 16:34
Last Modified:11 Jan 2022 01:06

Thesis Files

[img] PDF - Final Version
See Usage Policy.


Repository Staff Only: item control page