Development of a Gas Cluster Ion Source and Its Application for Surface Treatment

Vasiliy O. Pelenovich, Xiaomei M. Zeng, Alexei E. Ieshkin, Vladimir S. Chernysh, Alexander B. Tolstogouzov, Bing Yang, Dejun Fu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Abstract: A custom-built gas cluster ion source with an energy up to 20 keV is constructed. Ar, CO2, N2, and O2 are used as the working gases. The clusters are formed by metal conical nozzles with critical diameters of 65−135 um and a cone angle of 14°. To facilitate evacuation of the chambers we use the pulse mode of nozzle feeding. This allows an increase in the gas pressure in the stagnation zone (inlet pressure) up to 15 bar. The current of the clusters with an energy of 20 keV is 20 µA; the maximal current density is 3 µA/cm2. The mass spectra of the argon clusters formed at different pressures and electron ionization energy are studied by time-of-flight spectroscopy. The inlet pressure dependence of the mean cluster size is considered as a function of the condensation parameter Г*. An argon cluster beam is used to smooth the surface of the titanium coating and pressed silicon nanopowder. The roughness of the Ti coating surface decreases from 3.7 to 0.8 nm; the removal of microparticles from the surface is also observed. In the case of the surface of Si, besides the smoothing effect the formation of 100 nm craters is observed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)344-350
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Surface Investigation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


  • crater formation
  • gas cluster ion beam
  • surface smoothing
  • time-of-flight mass spectra


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