6 December 2016 Morphology and mechanisms of picosecond ablation of metal films on fused silica substrates
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The ablation of magnetron sputtered metal films on fused silica substrates by a 1053 nm, picosecond class laser was studied as part of a demonstration of its use for in-situ characterization of the laser spot under conditions commonly used at the sample plane for laser machining and damage studies. Film thicknesses were 60 and 120 nm. Depth profiles and SEM images of the ablation sites revealed several striking and unexpected features distinct from those typically observed for ablation of bulk metals. Very sharp thresholds were observed for both partial and complete ablation of the films. Partial film ablation was largely independent of laser fluence with a surface smoothness comparable to that of the unablated surface. Clear evidence of material displacement was seen at the boundary for complete film ablation. These features were common to a number of different metal films including Inconel on commercial neutral density filters, stainless steel, and aluminum. We will present data showing the morphology of the ablation sites on these films as well as a model of the possible physical mechanisms producing the unique features observed.
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Isaac L. Bass, Raluca A. Negres, Ken Stanion, Gabe Guss, Wesley J. Keller, Manyalibo J. Matthews, Alexander M. Rubenchik, Jae Hyuck Yoo, and Jeffrey D. Bude "Morphology and mechanisms of picosecond ablation of metal films on fused silica substrates", Proc. SPIE 10014, Laser-Induced Damage in Optical Materials 2016, 1001414 (6 December 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2243342; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2243342


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