Skip to main content Accessibility help

Charge-State Field Evaporation Behavior in Cu(V) Nanocrystalline Alloys

  • Xuyang Zhou (a1) and Gregory B. Thompson (a1)


Atom probe tomography (APT) of a nanocrystalline Cu–7 at.% V thin film annealed at 400°C for 1 h revealed chemical partitioning in the form of solute segregation. The vanadium precipitated along high angle grain boundaries and at triple junctions, determined by cross-correlative precession electron diffraction of the APT specimen. Upon field evaporation, the V2+/(V1+ + VH1+) ratio from the decomposed ions was ~3 within the matrix grains and ~16 within the vanadium precipitates. It was found that the VH1+ complex was prevalent in the matrix, with its presence explained in terms of hydrogen's ability to assist in field evaporation. The change in the V2+/(V1+ + VH1+) charge-state ratio (CSR) was studied as a function of base temperature (25–90 K), laser pulse energy (50–200 pJ), and grain orientation. The strongest influence on changing the CSR was with the varied pulse laser, which made the CSR between the precipitates and the matrix equivalent at the higher laser pulse energies. However, at these conditions, the precipitates began to coarsen. The collective results of the CSRs are discussed in terms of field strengths related to the chemical coordination.


Corresponding author

*Author for correspondence: Xuyang Zhou, E-mail:


Hide All
Andersson, JO, Helander, T, Hoglund, LH, Shi, PF & Sundman, B (2002). THERMO-CALC & DICTRA, computational tools for materials science. Calphad: Comput Coupling Phase Diagrams Thermochem 26(2), 273312.
Aruga, Y, Nako, H, Tsuneishi, H, Hasegawa, Y, Tao, H, Ichihara, C & Serizawa, A (2013). Effect of Mg or Ag addition on the evaporation field of Al. Ultramicroscopy 132, 3135.
Barofsky, DF & Müller, EW (1968). Mass spectrometric analysis of low temperature field evaporation. Surf Sci 10(2), 177196.
Berman, R & MacDonald, DKC (1952). The Thermal and Electrical Conductivity of Copper at Low Temperatures. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series A, Mathematical and Physical Sciences 211(1104), 122128.
Chookajorn, T, Murdoch, HA & Schuh, CA (2012). Design of stable nanocrystalline alloys. Science 337(6097), 951954.
Darling, K, Rajagopalan, M, Komarasamy, M, Bhatia, M, Hornbuckle, B, Mishra, R & Solanki, K (2016). Extreme creep resistance in a microstructurally stable nanocrystalline alloy. Nature 537(7620), 378381.
Gomer, R (1959). Field desorption. J Chem Phys 31(2), 341345.
Gomer, R & Swanson, LW (1963). Theory of field desorption. J Chem Phys 38(7), 16131629.
Haydock, R & Kingham, DR (1980). Post-ionization of field-evaporated ions. Phys Rev Lett 44(23), 15201523.
Herbig, M, Raabe, D, Li, YJ, Choi, P, Zaefferer, S & Goto, S (2014). Atomic-scale quantification of grain boundary segregation in nanocrystalline material. Phys Rev Lett 112(12), 126103.
Jung, WD, Schmidt, FA & Danielson, GC (1977). Thermal-Conductivity of High-Purity Vanadium. Physical Review B 15(2), 659665.
Kellogg, GL (1981). Determining the field emitter temperature during laser irradiation in the pulsed laser atom probe. J Appl Phys 52(8), 53205328.
Kingham, DR (1982). The post-ionization of field evaporated ions—a theoretical explanation of multiple charge-states. Surf Sci 116(2), 273301.
Kittel, C (2005). Introduction to Solid State Physics, 8th ed. Berkeley: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Larson, DJ, Gault, B, Geiser, BP, De Geuser, F & Vurpillot, F (2013a). Atom probe tomography spatial reconstruction: Status and directions. Curr Opin Solid State Mater Sci 17(5), 236247.
Larson, DJ, Geiser, BP, Prosa, TJ & Kelly, TF (2012). On the use of simulated field-evaporated specimen apex shapes in atom probe tomography data reconstruction. Microsc Microanal 18(5), 953963.
Larson, DJ, Prosa, TJ, Ulfig, RM, Geiser, BP & Kelly, TF (2013b). Local Electrode Atom Probe Tomography: A User's Guide. New York: Springer.
Loberg, B & Norden, H (1968). Observations of the field-evaporation end form of tungsten. Arkiv Fysik 39, 383.
Marquis, E & Hyde, J (2010). Applications of atom-probe tomography to the characterisation of solute behaviours. Mater Sci Eng R-Rep 69(4–5), 3762.
Marquis, EA & Gault, B (2008). Determination of the tip temperature in laser assisted atom-probe tomography using charge-state distributions. J Appl Phys 104(8), 084914.
Miller, M & Hetherington, M (1991). Local magnification effects in the atom probe. Surf Sci 246(1–3), 442449.
Miller, MK & Forbes, RG (2014). Atom-Probe Tomography: The Local Electrode Atom Probe. New York: Springer USA.
Müller, EW (1956). Field desorption. Phys Rev 102(3), 618624.
Nishikawa, O (1983). Reduced evaporation field by the field-induced dipoles of physisorbed He, Ne and H-2. Surf Sci 131(2–3), 239244.
Peralta, J, Broderick, SR & Rajan, K (2013). Mapping energetics of atom probe evaporation events through first principles calculations. Ultramicroscopy 132, 143151.
Shen, YX, Kong, LT, Gong, HR, Lai, WS & Liu, BX (2003). Construction of an embedded-atom potential for an immiscible Cu–V system. J Phys Soc Jpn 72(3), 464467.
Sundell, G (2012). Atom probe tomography of hydrogen and of grain boundaries in corroded Ziracloy-2. In Department of Appied Physics. Göteborg, Sweden: Chalmers University of Technology.
Tsong, TT (1978). Field-ion image-formation. Surf Sci 70(1), 211233.
Vurpillot, F, Bostel, A & Blavette, D (2000). Trajectory overlaps and local magnification in three-dimensional atom probe. Appl Phys Lett 76(21), 31273129.
Vurpillot, F, Bostel, A, Menand, A & Blavette, D (1999). Trajectories of field emitted ions in 3D atom-probe. Eur Phys J AP 6(2), 217221.
Wada, M, Uemori, R & Nishikawa, O (1983). Effect of hydrogen on the evaporation field of metals. Surf Sci 134(1), 1729.
Yao, L, Withrow, T, Restrepo, OD, Windl, W & Marquis, EA (2015). Effects of the local structure dependence of evaporation fields on field evaporation behavior. Appl Phys Lett 107(24), 241602.
Zhou, X, Yu, X-x, Kaub, T, Martens, RL & Thompson, GB (2016). Grain boundary specific segregation in nanocrystalline Fe(Cr). Sci Rep 6, 34642.



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed