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Calculation of Ion Energy Distributions from Radio Frequency Plasmas Using a Simplified Kinetic Approach



Martin Misakian, Yicheng Wang


Using an elementary kinetic approach, a procedure is described for calculating ion energy distributions (IEDs) from radio frequency (rf) plasmas. The calculated distributions, which are in the form of histograms, are used to fit experimental argon and CF3+ IEDs measured in a Gaseous Electronics Conference rf reactor modified to operate in a pulsed inductively coupled mode. Given the average plasma potential profile and its time dependence, the calculation incorporates a number of parameters used in more comprehensive treatments of the problem to determine the shape of the IED. The reverse calculation that determines the average potential profile, given an experimental IED, cannot be uniquely done, but some insights may be gained in some cases if a sufficient number of plasma related parameters are known, e.g., the shape and amplitude of the rf modulation. The results of the calculation indicate that argon ions forming the IEDs during the bright (H) mode come nearly exclusively from a presheath region that extends far into the interior of the plasma. The calculations also suggest that the CF3+ ions forming the IEDs observed during the dim (E) mode may preferentially come from near the edge of the bulk plasma. Possible significances of this difference are noted.
Journal of Applied Physics


calculation, GEC reactor, ion energy distributions, potential profiles, rf plasmas


Misakian, M. and Wang, Y. (2000), Calculation of Ion Energy Distributions from Radio Frequency Plasmas Using a Simplified Kinetic Approach, Journal of Applied Physics, [online], (Accessed May 18, 2024)


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Created March 31, 2000, Updated October 12, 2021