Triple probe interrogation of spokes in a HiPIMS discharge



Estrin, FL, Karkari, SK and Bradley, JW
(2017) Triple probe interrogation of spokes in a HiPIMS discharge. JOURNAL OF PHYSICS D-APPLIED PHYSICS, 50 (29).

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Abstract

Using a triple probe situated above the racetrack and inside the magnetic trap of a magnetron, rotating spoke-like structures have been clearly identified in a single HiPIMS pulse as periodic modulations of the electron temperature T e, electron density n e, ion saturation current I isat, floating potential V f and plasma potential V p. The spokes rotate in the E  ×  B direction with a velocity of ~8.8 km s−1. Defining the spoke shape from the footprint of the ion current, they deliver to flush-mounted probes embedded in the target, each spoke can be characterised by a dense but cool leading edge (n e ~ 2.0  ×  1019 m−3, T e ~ 2.1 eV) and a relatively hotter but more rarefied trailing edge (n e ~ 1  ×  1019 m−3, T e ~ 3.9 eV). Measurements of V p show a potential hump towards the rear of the spoke, separated from regions of the highest density, with plasma potentials up to 8 V more positive than the inter-spoke regions. Azimuthal electric fields of ~1 kV m−1 associated with these structures are calculated. Transforming the triple probe time-traces to functions of the azimuthal angle θ and assuming a Gaussian radial profile for the plasma parameters, 2D spatial maps of n e, T e and V p have been constructed as well as the target ion current density J p from the embedded probes. The phase relationship between T e, V p and n e can be clearly seen using this representation with n e leading T e and V p with a phase shift between them of ~50°. Regions of maximum ion current to the target, delivered by individual spokes, coincide with the overlap of regions of high n e and T e measured above the target at a height of 15 mm. Ions created at elevated positions above the target in the observed dense region will take several micro-seconds to reach that surface, so contributing to the target ion current in the following spokes.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: magnetron sputtering, HiPIMS, spokes, triple probe
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2017 09:56
Last Modified: 18 Aug 2022 20:12
DOI: 10.1088/1361-6463/aa7544
Related URLs:
URI: https://livrepository.liverpool.ac.uk/id/eprint/3008911