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Irradiation is a very powerful tool to modify the atomic structure of materials. Generally, disorder or damage is produced in the process, although in some specific cases, useful structural rearrangements can be produced. During an irradiation, energetic particles collide with target atoms, inducing electronic excitations and producing local excited states. By different processes, these excited states relax to atomic defects. By controlling the irradiation parameters (nature, energy and fluence of the incident particles), it is possible to control the creation of damage. It is also possible to follow as a function of the defect concentration or the phase transformation, the evolution of mechanical, optical and conductivity properties.
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