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Acta Cryst. (1997). A53, 528

Atomic and ion collisions in solids and at surfaces

Edited by Roger Smith

Pp. ix + 309. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997
Price £45.00 (US$69.95). ISBN 0-521-44022-X

This book provides a comprehensive survey of various theoretical/computational models available for simulating energetic collisions of atoms with surfaces. Although the book does not address traditional crystallographic methods, it provides the framework for understanding how experimental techniques such as ion scattering spectroscopy (ISS) are sensitive to surface structure. The nine chapters are well organized, and smooth transitions between the various topics demonstrate the editor's skillful coordination of contributions from seven co-authors. While citing many experimental studies along the way, the book focuses on treating the dynamics of atom/surface collisions through non-experimental methods. The text begins with a review of classical scattering theory and the origins of binary collision theory. Throughout, the authors show with clarity and rigor how various standard equations are derived from first principles. It is not assumed that the reader has an advanced degree in physics or mathematics. The authors survey four basic approaches to modeling dynamics: binary collision theory, transport theory, Monte Carlo techniques, and molecular dynamics simulations. Because an accurate atom/surface potential is required in all computational treatments, a chapter is devoted to the most common semi-empirical methods used for calculating these potentials.

A major theme to the book is understanding the inelastic processes involved when an energetic ion penetrates a lattice. The authors review many models which describe both the excitation of electrons in the solid and the recoil of substrate nuclei brought about by a swift atomic projectile. Discussion focuses on predicting the final rest distribution of the projectiles within the lattice, the corresponding atom displacements induced in the substrate, and sputtering phenomena. Along the way, the authors evaluate many of the popular algorithms and computational packages used in the field, such as TRIM, TRIDYN, PRAL, KORAL, VEGAS, MARLOWE and SUSPRE. The authors demonstrate how numerical simulations of ISS, secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), depth profiling, radiation damage, and ion implantation can lead to a greater understanding of the fundamental dynamics. A chapter is also devoted to simulations of the surface topographical changes induced by ion bombardment and deposition. The Editor succeeds in providing a valuable resource for researchers in academia and industry, in fields of surface science, semiconductor engineering, thin-film deposition, and particle-surface interactions, who desire a deeper understanding of the non-experimental ways to study energetic atom/surface collisions. Although the book does not include problems for students, it would make an excellent supporting text for a special topics graduate course. Those interested in structural information will find a description of forward simulations whereby computations accurately reproduce ISS data; however, the inverse problem, i.e. extracting a unique surface structure directly from ISS data, has yet to be solved.

Dennis Jacobs

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame
IN 46556
USA


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