Nanoscale cavitation instability of the surface melt along the grooves of one-dimensional nanorelief gratings on an aluminum surface
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- Ionin, A.A., Kudryashov, S.I., Ligachev, A.E. et al. Jetp Lett. (2011) 94: 266. doi:10.1134/S0021364011160065
Femtosecond laser nanostructuring at low fluences produces a one-dimensional quasiperiodic grating of grooves on an aluminum surface with a period (≈0.5 μm) that is determined by the length of a surface electromagnetic wave. The structure of the grooves of the surface nanograting is formed by regular nanopeaks following with a period of about 200 nm. Some nanopeaks manifest craters at their tops. It is suggested that nanopeaks are formed due to the frozen nanoscale spallative ablation of a nanolayer of an aluminum melt in quasiperiodic regions corresponding to interference maxima of the laser radiation with the surface electromagnetic wave. The periodicity of the appearance of nanopeaks along grooves is due to the previously predicted mechanism of cavitation deformation of the melt surface in the process of macroscopic spallation ablation. However, in this case, cavitation is coherent (similar to a near-critical spinodal decay) rather than spontaneous.