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# Study of Surface Damage in Silicon by Irradiation with Focused Rubidium Ions

Mar 2023

Cold atom ion sources have been developed and commercialized as alternativesources for focused ion beams (FIB). So far, applications and related researchhave not been widely reported. In this paper, a prototype rubidium FIB is usedto study the irradiation damage of 8.5 keV beam energy Rb$^+$ ions on siliconto examine the suitability of rubidium for nanomachining applications.Transmission electron microscopy combined with energy dispersive X-rayspectroscopy is applied to silicon samples irradiated by different doses ofrubidium ions. The experimental results show a duplex damage layer consistingof an outer layer of oxidation without Rb and an inner layer containing Rbmostly at the interface to the underlying Si substrate. The steady-state damagelayer is measured to be $23.2(\pm 0.3)$ nm thick with a rubidium staining levelof $7(\pm1)$ atomic percentage.

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