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Two-dimensional particle-in-cell Monte Carlo simulation of a miniature inductively coupled plasma source

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4 Author(s)
Takao, Y. ; Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Graduate School of Engineering, Kyoto University, Yoshida-Honmachi, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan ; Kusaba, Naoki ; Eriguchi, K. ; Ono, Kouichi

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Two-dimensional axisymmetric particle-in-cell simulations with Monte Carlo collision calculations (PIC-MCC) have been conducted to investigate argon microplasma characteristics of a miniature inductively coupled plasma source with a 5-mm-diameter planar coil, where the radius and length are 5 mm and 6 mm, respectively. Coupling the rf-electromagnetic fields to the plasma is carried out based on a collisional model and a kinetic model. The former employs the cold-electron approximation and the latter incorporates warm-electron effects. The numerical analysis has been performed for pressures in the range 370–770 mTorr and at 450 MHz rf powers below 3.5 W, and then the PIC-MCC results are compared with available experimental data and fluid simulation results. The results show that a considerably thick sheath structure can be seen compared with the plasma reactor size and the electron energy distribution is non-Maxwellian over the entire plasma region. As a result, the distribution of the electron temperature is quite different from that obtained in the fluid model. The electron temperature as a function of rf power is in a reasonable agreement with experimental data. The pressure dependence of the plasma density shows different tendency between the collisional and kinetic model, implying noncollisional effects even at high pressures due to the high rf frequency, where the electron collision frequency is less than the rf driving frequency.

Published in:

Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:108 ,  Issue: 9 )