Regular Article – Plasma Physics
Ultrasound harmonic generation and atomic layer deposition of multilayer, deep-UV mirrors and filters with microcavity plasma arrays
Laboratory for Optical Physics and Engineering, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Illinois, 306 N Wright St, 61801, Urbana, IL, USA
2 Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering, University of Illinois, 1206 W Green St, 61801, Urbana, IL, USA
3 Intel Corp., 2501 NE Century Blvd, 97124, Hillsboro, OR, USA
4 Eden Park Illumination, 902 N. Country Fair Drive, 61820, Champaign, IL, USA
Accepted: 12 April 2023
Published online: 11 May 2023
In honor of Professor Kurt Becker’s pioneering contributions to microplasma physics and applications, we report the capabilities of arrays of microcavity plasmas in two emerging and disparate applications. The first of these is the generation of ultrasound radiation in the 20–240 kHz spectral range with microplasmas in either a static or jet configuration. When a array of microplasma jets is driven by a 20-kHz sinusoidal voltage, for example, harmonics as high as m = 12 are detected and fractional harmonics are produced by controlling the spatial symmetry of the emitter array. The preferential emission of ultrasound in an inverted cone having an angle of with respect to the surface normal of the jet array’s exit face is attributed to interference between spatially periodic, outward-propagating waves generated by the arrays. The spatial distribution of ultrasound generated by the arrays is analogous to the radiation patterns produced by Yagi-Uda phased array antennas at RF frequencies for which radiation is emitted broadside to arrays of parallel electric dipoles. Also, the nonperturbative envelope of the ultrasound harmonic spectrum resembles that for high-order harmonic generation at optical frequencies in rare gas plasmas and attests to the strong nonlinearity provided by the pulsed microplasmas in the sub-250-kHz region. Specifically, the relative intensities of the second and third harmonics exceed that for the fundamental, and a “plateau” region is observed extending from the 5th through the 8th harmonics. A strong plasma nonlinearity appears to be responsible for both the appearance of fractional harmonics and the nonperturbative nature of the acoustic harmonic spectrum. Multilayer metal-oxide optical filters designed to have peak transmission near 222 nm in the deep-UV region of the spectrum have been fabricated by microplasma-assisted atomic layer deposition. Alternating layers of ZrO and AlO, each having a thickness in the 20–50 nm range, were grown on quartz and silicon substrates by successively exposing the substrate to the Zr or Al precursor (tetrakis(dimethylamino) zirconium or trimethylaluminum, respectively) and the products of an oxygen microplasma while maintaining the substrate temperature at 300 K. Bandpass filters comprising 9 cycles of 30-nm-thick ZrO/50-nm-thick AlO film pairs transmit 80% at 235 nm but < 35% in the 250–280 nm interval. Such multilayer reflectors appear to be of significant value in several applications, including bandpass filters suppressing long wavelength (240–270 nm) radiation emitted by KrCl (222) lamps.
© The Author(s) 2023
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