Etching rate and structural modification of polymer films during low energy ion irradiation

V. Zaporojtchenko, J. Zekonyte, J. Erichsen, F. Faupel

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Various polymers were sputtered with low energy Ar+ ions of 1 keV in order to determine their etching rate. Hydrocarbons, oxygenated, fluorinated and nitrogen-containing glassy polymers with a broad range of the glass transition temperature (Tg,) were chosen. The etching rate was measured using a profilometer, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. At the same time the surface chemical modification, and the surface glass transition temperature were studied. Comparing the sputter rate to the various polymer properties a correlation among the Tg, cross-link density, and sputter rate was found. In addition, the sputter rate as a function of the integral ion fluence proved to exhibit a sharp increase in the initial regime of very low fluence. The results are discussed in terms of the characteristics of the polymers.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)155-160
    JournalNuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section B: Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2003


    • ion irradiation effects
    • polymers
    • glass transition
    • X-ray photoelectron spectra - surface analysis


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