Modification of nanodiamonds by xenon implantation: A molecular dynamics study

Jason L. Fogg, Alireza Aghajamali, Jonathan A. Hinks, Stephen E. Donnelly, Andrey A. Shiryaev, Nigel Marks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Xenon implantation into nanodiamonds is studied using molecular dynamics. The nanodiamonds range in size from 2 to 10 nm and the implantation energy extends up to 40 keV. For small nanodiamonds an energy-window effect occurs in which xenon energies of around 6 keV destroy the nanodiamond, while in larger nanodiamonds the radiation cascade is increasingly similar to those in bulk material. Destruction of the small nanodiamonds occurs due to thermal annealing associated with the small size of the particles and the absence of a heat-loss path. Simulations are also performed for a range of impact parameters, and for a series of double-nanodiamond systems in which a heat-loss path is present. The latter show that the thermal shock caused by the impact occurs on the timescale of a few picoseconds. These findings are relevant to ion-beam modification of nanoparticles by noble gases as well as astrophysics studies where implantation is proposed as the mechanism for xenon incorporation in pre-solar nanodiamonds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-40
Number of pages9
JournalNuclear Instruments & Methods in Physics Research, Section B: Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2019
Externally publishedYes


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