MeV Ion Beam Induced Changes in Crystaline Materials
In the recent years MeV ions have been extensively utilized as indispensable powerful tool in a wide range of materials science research. Ions are very efficient in creating numerous ionizations on their path through the material by ejecting/exciting electrons (electron stopping) and in creating vacancies by recoiling the whole atoms (nuclei) from their lattice sites (nuclear stopping). Therefore, irradiation of materials with energetic ion beams is considered as a) an efficient tool to alter materials physical, chemical, electrical and optical properties and b) a sensitive probe that can be used to characterise materials using some of the Ion Beam Analysis (IBA) methods. Understanding of complicated dynamical processes that lead to structural modifications of materials requires the knowledge of experimental data related to kinematics of defects during and after irradiation. Therefore the goal of the present proposal is experimental study of the time evolution of radiation induced changes induced by energetic (MeV) ion beams and their characterization using the RBI Tandem Accelerator Facility. The focus will be on studying: (i) influence of electronic stopping and related nanostructuring of materials by ion track methodology; (ii) influence of nuclear stopping to radiation damage and amorphization in crystals, including crystalline and functional materials of interest for future fusion reactors; (iii) charge transport properties in crystalline materials, focusing on novel semiconductor materials for radiation detection. Experimental methodology relies mostly on the unique RBI dual-beam end station that will be used for ion beam irradiations and simultaneous characterization of induced changes using IBA methods like RBS and PIXE in channelling mode, ERDA, NRA and PIGE, as well as IBIC (Ion Beam Induced Charge).