Ion beam induced modification and nanostructures formation in thin SiC/Pd films on c-Si substrate
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Ion beam induced modification of thin metallic films is an emerging approach to grow metallic nanoparticles controllably. Modification of thin solid films is helpful in fabricating arrays of nanoscale particles for electronic and photonic devices and for the catalyzed synthesis of nanotubes and nanowires. In this work, the modification and nanostructures formation over the surface of SiC/Pd thin films of 15 and 45 nm thicknesses, grown on crystalline Silicon (c-Si) substrate by electron beam deposition, upon ion irradiation, have been investigated by means of scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (RBS), Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) and Raman spectroscopy. The SiC/Pd bilayer films were irradiated with 100 keV Ar+ ions at fluences of 1 × 1015 and 5 × 1015 ions/cm2 at room temperature. The surface morphology from SEM analysis showed the formation of nanoparticles that were interconnected after irradiation. The RBS and EDS results confirmed the presence of Pd, C, O and Si. While the Raman spectrum of the pristine sample displayed only a sharp peak at 520 cm−1 characteristic to c-Si substrate, the spectra of the irradiated sample red-shifted to lower wavenumbers indicating the appearance of Si nanocrystals. Hence, ion beam irradiation is a promising method for the fabrication of SiC nanostructures on c-Si substrate.