Long time ion irradiation of surfaces under tilted incidence causes formation of regular nanostructures known as surface ripples. The nature of mechanisms leading to ripples is still not clear, this is why computational methods can shed the light on such a complex phenomenon and help to understand which surface processes are mainly responsible for it. In this work, we analyse the surface response of two materials, a semiconductor (silicon) and a metal (aluminium) under irradiation with the 250 eV and 1000 eV Ar ions focused at 70° from the normal to the surface. We simulate consecutive ion impacts by the means of molecular dynamics to investigate the effect on ripple formation. We find that the redistribution mechanism seems to be the main creator of ripples in amorphous materials, while the erosion mechanism is the leading origin for the pattern formation in crystalline metals.
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