In the present work, the low-fluence nonablating femtosecond laser irradiation (λ = 800 nm) of the GeO2 layer with Ge nanoclusters protected by SiO2 layers is studied by different types of microscopy (optical microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and scanning and transmittance electron microscopy) and Raman spectroscopy. After the laser modification, the multilayer thickness increased by 6%-29% depending on the laser fluence. It was found that the laser fluence of ∼40 mJ/cm2 was the optimal value for observing the swelling effect and was below the ablation threshold. Irradiation at this fluence led the Ge nanoclusters to decrease in size from 5-8 to ∼2 nm and crystallize, while the GeO2 matrix expanded due to the formation of GeO bubbles. The fabrication mechanism of the novel type of nanofoam consisting of a glassy matrix, cavities filled with gas, and semiconductor nanocrystals with reduced size dispersion is discussed. Presumably, this effect is associated with the selective absorption of IR (800 nm) laser radiation by Ge nanoclusters.
- 1.03.SY OPTICS
- 1.03 PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND ASTRONOMY
- 2.05 MATERIALS ENGINEERING