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The impact of O/Si ratio and hydrogen content on ArF excimer laser ablation of fused silica

: Tasche, D.; Gerhard, C.; Ihlemann, J.; Wieneke, S.; Viöl, W.


Journal of the European Optical Society 9 (2014), Art. 14026, 4 S.
ISSN: 1990-2573
Fraunhofer IST ()
fused silica; silicon suboxide; laser ablation; ablation threshold; stoichiometry

The impact of stoichiometry and hydrogen content on the ArF excimer laser ablation characteristics of fused silica is investigated. Nearsurface substoichiometic SiOx with x < 2 diminishes the ablation threshold as a result of increased absorption. The ablation rate is raised by an elevated hydrogen content. As confirmed by mass spectrometric analysis, the laser-induced formation of substoichiometric near-surface layers within the ablation spot sustains absorption and ablation for consecutive laser pulses.