Laser-induced explosive boiling during nanosecond laser ablation of silicon

V. Craciun, N. Bassim, R. K. Singh, D. Craciun, J. Hermann, C. Boulmer-Leborgne

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The surface morphology of single crystal (100) Si wafers irradiated by 266 and 1064nm laser pulses emitted by a Nd:YAG laser has been investigated. The morphology of the bottom of craters formed as a result of single or multipulse laser irradiation by the 266nm wavelength, which is well absorbed by Si (optical absorption coefficient, α ∼10 6 cm -1 ), remained flat and almost featureless up to the maximum fluence of 18J/cm 2 used in this study. The rims of the craters showed signs of radial liquid flow but it is apparent that the vaporization process was confined to the surface region. A different morphology was observed at the bottom of the craters formed by the 1064nm wavelength laser pulses. Because this wavelength is absorbed in volume, α<10 4 cm -1 , a rather thick liquid Si pool formed at the surface. For laser fluences higher than 3J/cm 2 evidence of boiling sites were observed at the bottom of the crater. By analyzing their formation mechanisms, density and shape, we suggest that they were induced by heterogeneous boiling and not homogeneous boiling, also known as phase explosion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)288-292
Number of pages5
JournalApplied Surface Science
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - 28 Jan 2002
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the European Materials Research Society 2001 Symposium - Strasbourg, France
Duration: 5 Jun 20015 Jun 2001


  • Droplets
  • Laser ablation
  • Nd:YAG laser
  • Phase explosion


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