Indexed on: 03 Dec '16Published on: 03 Dec '16Published in: The Review of scientific instruments
Carbon ions generated by ablation of a carbon target using an Nd:YAG laser pulse (wavelength λ = 1064 nm, pulse width τ = 7 ns, and laser fluence of 10-110 J cm(-2)) are characterized. Time-of-flight analyzer, a three-mesh retarding field analyzer, and an electrostatic ion energy analyzer are used to study the charge and energy of carbon ions generated by laser ablation. The dependencies of the ion signal on the laser fluence, laser focal point position relative to target surface, and the acceleration voltage are described. Up to C(4+) ions are observed. When no acceleration voltage is applied between the carbon target and a grounded mesh in front of the target, ion energies up to ∼400 eV/charge are observed. The time-of-flight signal is analyzed for different retarding field voltages in order to obtain the ion kinetic energy distribution. The ablation and Coulomb energies developed in the laser plasma are obtained from deconvolution of the ion time-of-flight signal. Deconvolution of the time-of-flight ion signal to resolve the contribution of each ion charge is accomplished using data from a retarding field analysis combined with the time-of-flight signal. The ion energy and charge state increase with the laser fluence. The position of the laser focal spot affects the ion generation, with focusing ∼1.9 mm in front of the target surface yielding maximum ions. When an external electric field is applied in an ion drift region between the target and a grounded mesh parallel to the target, fast ions are extracted and separated, in time, due to increased acceleration with charge state.