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Near-surface modification of polystyrene by Ar+: Molecular dynamics simulations and experimental validation

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10 Author(s)
Vegh, J.J. ; Department of Chemical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, California 94720, USA ; Nest, D. ; Graves, D.B. ; Bruce, R.
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Results are presented from molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of 100 eV Ar+ bombardment of a model polystyrene (PS) surface. The simulations show that the system transitions from an initially high sputter yield (SY) for the virgin polymer to a drastically lower SY as steady state is approached. This is consistent with corresponding ion beam experiments. The MD indicates that this drop in SY is due to the formation of a heavily cross-linked, dehydrogenated damaged layer. The thickness and structure of this layer are also consistent with ellipsometry and x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy measurements of Ar plasma-exposed PS samples.

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Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:91 ,  Issue: 23 )