Laser backside etching of fused silica with ultra-short pulses
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- Böhme, R., Pissadakis, S., Ruthe, D. et al. Appl. Phys. A (2006) 85: 75. doi:10.1007/s00339-006-3652-7
Laser backside etching of transparent materials like fused silica at the interface to liquids with sub-picosecond UV laser pulses using a pyrene/toluene solution is achieved. For the experimental conditions applied, the etching effect is rather weak with measured rates of the order of 0.1 nm/pulse. A linear dependence of the etched volume upon the laser pulse energy or the pulse number was extracted from the experimental data obtained. At low pulse numbers the etched surface exhibits a feature-free, smooth morphology, while quasi-periodic ripple formation is observed for prolonged laser exposure. In addition, the etching process is accompanied by enhanced carbon deposition at and in the vicinity of the etched surface. The etching mechanism proposed comprises the primary interaction of the laser radiation with the liquid, a surface-modification phase, and the etching of the modified fused-silica surface.