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Argon metastables in HiPIMS: validation of the ionization region model by direct comparison to time resolved tunable diode-laser diagnostics

Abstract : The volume plasma interactions of high power impulse magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS) discharges operated with a Ti target is analyzed in detail by combining time-resolved diagnostics with modeling of plasma kinetics. The model employed is the ionization region model (IRM) with an improved and detailed treatment of the kinetics of the argon metastable (Arm) state, called m-IRM. The diagnostics used is tunable diode-laser absorption spectroscopy (TD-LAS) of the Arm state, which gives the line-of-sight density integrated along the laser path parallel to the target surface. The TD-LAS recordings exhibit quite complex temporal evolutions Arm(t), with distinct features that are shown to reflect the time evolution of the plasma (the electron density and temperature), and of the argon gas (gas rarefaction and refill). The Arm(t) function is thus a tracer for the most important aspects of internal discharge physics, and therefore suitable for model testing and validation. The IRM model is constructed to be locked to obey specific experimental macroscopic discharge parameters, specifically the discharge current ID(t) and the voltage UD(t). It has to this purpose been run with the appropriate process gas pressures (from 0.67 to 2.67 Pa), with the experimentally applied voltage pulse profiles UD(t), and with the resulting current pulse profiles ID(t) (with maxima from 0.5 to 70 A). It is shown that the model reproduces the features in the TD-LAS measurements: both the Arm(t) evolution in single pulses, and how the pulse shapes change with gas pressure and with pulse amplitude. The good agreement between the measurements and model output is in this work taken to validate the basic assumptions of the m-IRM. In addition, the m-IRM results have been used to unravel the connections between volume plasma kinetics and various features recorded in the TD-LAS measurement, and to generalize the foremost characteristics of the studied discharges.
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Contributor : Christophe Laux <>
Submitted on : Saturday, July 23, 2016 - 8:48:50 PM
Last modification on : Monday, January 11, 2021 - 2:14:04 PM



G D Stancu, N Brenning, C Vitelaru, D Lundin, T Minea. Argon metastables in HiPIMS: validation of the ionization region model by direct comparison to time resolved tunable diode-laser diagnostics. Plasma Sources Science and Technology, IOP Publishing, 2015, 24 (4), pp.045011. ⟨10.1088/0963-0252/24/4/045011⟩. ⟨hal-01348452⟩



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