The energetics initiating ablation in poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) are studied using molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. The critical energy to initiate ablation in PMMA following the absorption of photons is investigated for two penetration depths along a range of fluences using a coarse-grained, hybrid Monte Carlo-MD scheme. Both heating and direct bond scission are simulated separately after photon absorption with additional transformation of material occurring via chemical reactions following the photochemical bond cleavage. For a given type of absorption and reaction channel, a critical energy can well describe the amount of energy required to initiate ablation. The simulations show a decrease in the critical energy when a greater amount of photochemistry is introduced in the system. The simulations complement experimental studies and elucidate how enhanced photochemistry lowers ablation thresholds in polymer substrates.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy(all)