Nanopillar formation from two-shot femtosecond laser ablation of poly- methyl methacrylate

F Baset and K Popov and A Villafranca and AM Alshehri and JM Guay and L Ramunno and VR Bhardwaj, APPLIED SURFACE SCIENCE, 357, 273-281 (2015).

DOI: 10.1016/j.apsusc.2015.09.007

We present experimental and numerical studies on the morphological evolution and dynamics of femtosecond laser ablation of bulk poly-methyl methacrylate (PMMA) irradiated with a pair of pulses. We show that a nanopillar-like structure is formed in the middle of the ablation crater for pulse energies below single-shot ablation threshold. The nanopillar is similar to 400 nm long, lies adjacent to a nanopore, and protrudes similar to 150 nm above the sample surface. As the pulse energy is increased gradually, the nanopillar disappears and the nanopore inside the ablation crater becomes larger. At higher pulse energies, a volcanic eruption like structure appears in the middle of the crater whose size and height increases with energy. 2D molecular dynamics simulations reveal that a nanojet and other features observed at higher pulse energies can be formed when the reflection of a shockwave, induced by the second laser pulse, causes density pinching in the middle of the interaction region that rapidly pushes out molten material towards the surface. The shockwave is reflected from the cold boundaries of a modified region created by the first laser pulse. Crown Copyright (C) 2015 Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Return to Publications page