Method and apparatus for ion milling

  • US 10,017,847 B2
  • Filed: 06/12/2008
  • Issued: 07/10/2018
  • Est. Priority Date: 03/05/2007
  • Status: Active Grant
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First Claim
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1. An anode layer ion source having a central axis and comprising:

  • an inner cathode;

    an outer cathode disposed around said inner cathode with a gap therebetween, said gap defining a loop having a straight portion joined with a turn portion;

    an anode disposed as a ring along a perimeter of said inner cathode and proximate said gap between said outer and inner cathodes; and

    at least one magnet proximate said inner cathode,wherein said inner and outer cathodes and said anode are adapted to form, in response to a voltage applied therebetween, an electric field, said electric field having a direction with a component that lies in the same plane along the entire loop and that continuously changes along the turn portion of the loop such that the trajectories of electrons moving along the straight portion of the loop change to follow the turn portion of the loop when the electrons reach the turn portion of the loop, thereby reducing electron loss at said turn portion, andwherein said at least one magnet is arranged to provide at least a portion of a magnetic field having a direction that changes along the turn portion of the loop, said direction of the magnetic field being different from the direction of the trajectories of the electrons at least at the turn portion of the loop.

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