Boron film laser deposition by ultrashort pulses for use as neutron converter material
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This study investigated the production of boron films by femtosecond pulsed laser deposition (PLD) to be used as converters on bulk semiconductor neutron detectors. The ablation threshold of metallic boron was determined and the film growth was studied as a function of deposition time (5–90 min) and laser pulse energy (35–530 μJ). The films were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), revealing a flaky morphology, optical profilometry, which determined the films thicknesses (from 80 nm up to 4 μm), Ion Beam Analysis (IBA) that assessed their elemental composition and X-ray diffraction (XRD), which revealed an amorphous structure. In addition, a thermal load study was performed to evaluate the heat flux onto the substrate during deposition process. Stable boron films obtained show that the femtosecond PLD process is reliable and reproducible for the fabrication of thick boron coatings.
We would like to thank the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq): projects 465763/2014-6 and 141628/2015-4; Secretary of Strategic Affairs; Lamfi (Laboratory of material analyses using ion beams—São Paulo University); the support given by the Center for Lasers and Applications’ Multiuser Facility at IPEN-CNEN/SP and the Nuclear Fuel Center Multiuser Facility X-Ray Diffraction Laboratory at IPEN-CNEN/SP.
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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