Ion beam machining


A machining process based on the sputtering action of an accelerated ion beam.

The ions generated from the ion source are accelerated and introduced into the reaction chamber, and sputter the sample. This process can be used either as removal process of the sample, or as deposition process of the sample material on other sample. In case of removal process, variable three-dimensional shapes can be fabricated by adjusting the ion incident angle in relation to the sample, because the finished profile consists of edges parallel with the incident direction of the ions. By focusing the beam diameter to a submicrometer order, ultramicroscopic machining can be performed. Ar gas is generally used as the ion source. The sputtering rate (number of etched atoms/number of bombarding ions) depends on the atomic weight of the processing target. So, Kr gas and other gases are also used.


[Related Terms]
Reactive Ion Etching(RIE), Ion beam-assisted machining