Molecular dynamics simulation of beryllium oxide irradiated by deuterium ions: sputtering and reflection.

Author(s) Hodille, E.A.; Byggmästar, J.; Safi, E.; Nordlund, K.
Journal J Phys Condens Matter
Date Published 2019 May 08

The sputtering and reflection properties of wurtzite beryllium oxide (BeO) subjected to deuterium (D) ions bombardment at 300 K with ion energy between 10 eV and 200 eV is studied by classical molecular dynamics. Cumulative irradiations of wurtzite BeO show a D concentration threshold above which an 'unphysical dramatic' sputtering is observed. From the cumulative irradiations, simulation cells with different D concentrations are used to run non-cumulative irradiations at different concentrations. Using a D concentration close to the experimentally determined saturation concentration (0.12 atomic fraction), the simulations are able to reproduce accurately the experimental sputtering yield of BeO materials. The processes driving the sputtering of beryllium (Be) and oxygen (O) atoms as molecules are subsequently determined. At low irradiation energy, between 10 eV and 80 eV, swift chemical sputtering (SCS) is dominant and produces mostly OD molecules. At high energy, the sputtered molecules are mostly Be O molecules (mainly BeO dimer). Four different processes are associated to the formation of such molecules: the physical sputtering of BeO dimer, the delayed SCS not involving D ions and the detachment-induced sputtering. The physical sputtering of BeO dimer can be delayed if the sputtering event implies two interactions with the incoming ion (first interaction in its way in the material, the other in its way out if it is backscattered). The detachment-induced sputtering is a characteristic feature of the 'dramatic' sputtering and is mainly observed when the concentration of D is close to the threshold leading to this sputtering regime.

DOI 10.1088/1361-648X/ab04d7
ISSN 1361-648X
Citation J Phys Condens Matter. 2019;31(18):185001.

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