Monte Carlo simulation of large angle scattering effects in heavy ion elastic recoil detection analysis and ion transmission through nanoapertures

Franich, R 2007, Monte Carlo simulation of large angle scattering effects in heavy ion elastic recoil detection analysis and ion transmission through nanoapertures, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Applied Sciences, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Monte Carlo simulation of large angle scattering effects in heavy ion elastic recoil detection analysis and ion transmission through nanoapertures
Author(s) Franich, R
Year 2007
Abstract Heavy Ion Elastic Recoil Detection Analysis (HIERDA) is a versatile Ion Beam Analysis technique well suited to multi-elemental depth profiling of thin layered structures and near-surface regions of materials. An existing limitation is the inability to accurately account for the pronounced broadening and tailing effects of multiple scattering typically seen in HIERDA spectra. This thesis investigates the role of multiple large angle scattering in heavy ion applications such as HIERDA, and seeks to quantify its contribution to experimental output. This is achieved primarily by the development of a computer simulation capable of predicting these contributions and using it to classify and quantify the interactions that cause them. Monte Carlo ion transport simulation is used to generate simulated HIERDA spectra and the results are compared to experimental data acquired using the Time of Flight HIERDA facility at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation.

A Monte Carlo simulation code was adapted to the simulation of HIERDA spectra with considerable attention on improving the modelling efficiency to reduce processing time. Efficiency enhancements have achieved simulation time reductions of two to three orders of magnitude. The simulation is shown to satisfactorily reproduce the complex shape of HIERDA spectra. Some limitations are identified in the ability to accurately predict peak widths and the absolute magnitude of low energy tailing in some cases. The code is used to identify the plural scattering contribution to the spectral features under investigation, and the complexity of plurally scattered ion and recoil paths is demonstrated. The program is also shown to be useful in the interpretation of overlapped energy spectra of elements of similar mass whose signals cannot be reliably separated experimentally.

The effect of large angle scattering on the transmission of heavy ions through a nano-scale aperture mask, used to collimate an ion beam to a very small beam spot, is modelled using a version of the program adapted to handle the more complex geometry of the aperture mask. The effectiveness of nano-aperture collimation was studied for a variety of ion-energy combinations. Intensity, energy, and angular distributions of transmitted ions were calculated to quantify the degree to which scattering within the mask limits the spatial resolution achievable. The simulation successfully predicted the effect of misaligning the aperture and the beam, and the result has subsequently been observed experimentally.

Transmitted ion distributions showed that the higher energy heavier ions studied are more effectively collimated than are lower energy lighter ions. However, there is still a significant probability of transmission of heavy ions with substantial residual energy beyond the perimeter of the aperture. For the intended application, ion beam lithography, these ions are likely to be problematic. The results indicate that medium energy He ions are the more attractive option, as the residual energy of scattered transmitted ions can be more readily managed by customising the etching process. Continuing research by experimentalists working in this area is proceeding in this direction as a result of the conclusions from this work.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Applied Sciences
Keyword(s) Heavy ions
Scattering (Physics)
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