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Surface nanostructures by single highly charged ions

Facsko, S.; Heller, R.; El-Said, A.; Meissl, W.; Aumayr, F.


It has recently been demonstrated that the impact of individual, slow but highly charged ions on various surfaces can induce surface modifications with nanometer dimensions. Generally, the size of these surface modifications (blisters, hillocks, craters or pits) increases dramatically with the potential energy of the highly charged ion, while the kinetic energy of the projectile ions seems to be of little importance. This paper presents the currently available experimental evidence and theoretical models and discusses the circumstances and conditions under which nanosized features on different surfaces due to the impact of slow highly charged ions can be produced.

Keywords: nanostructures; highly charge ions; AFM


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