Title
Theoretical investigation of grain size tuning during prolonged bias-enhanced nucleation
Author
Faculty/Department
Faculty of Sciences. Chemistry
Faculty of Sciences. Physics
Publication type
article
Publication
Washington, D.C. ,
Subject
Physics
Chemistry
Source (journal)
Chemistry of materials / American Chemical Society. - Washington, D.C.
Volume/pages
23(2011) :6 , p. 1414-1423
ISSN
0897-4756
ISI
000288291400011
Carrier
E
Target language
English (eng)
Full text (Publishers DOI)
Affiliation
University of Antwerp
Abstract
In this paper, the effects of prolonged bias-enhanced nucleation (prolonged BEN) on the growth mechanisms of diamond are investigated by molecular dynamics (MD) and combined MD-Metropolis Monte Carlo (MD-MMC) simulations. First, cumulative impacts of CxHy+ and Hx+ on an a-C:H/nanodiamond composite were simulated; second, nonconsecutive impacts of the dominant ions were simulated in order to understand the observed phenomena in more detail. As stated in the existing literature, the growth of diamond structures during prolonged BEN is a process that takes place below the surface of the growing film. The investigation of the penetration behavior of CxHy+ and Hx+ species shows that the carbon-containing ions remain trapped within this amorphous phase where they dominate mechanisms like precipitation of sp3 carbon clusters. The H+ ions, however, penetrate into the crystalline phase at high bias voltages (>100 V), destroying the perfect diamond structure. The experimentally measured reduction of grain sizes at high bias voltage, reported in the literature, might thus be related to penetrating H+ ions. Furthermore, the CxHy+ ions are found to be the most efficient sputtering agents, preventing the build up of defective material.
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