We report here on the recently built Heavy Ion ERDA set up at iThemba LABS Gauteng; describing a typical
application in the study of interfacial reactions in an Al2O3–Ti ceramic–metal multilayer structure
annealed in vacuum at 800 C for 2 h. Depth profile extraction was found to be best obtained through
combined use of direct calculation and Monte Carlo simulation codes as opposed to using just either
of the methods. The obtained profile suggests a case of the Kirkendall effect, whereupon the inter-diffusion
between the metal and the ceramic was largely due to the faster diffusion of the metal into the amorphous
ceramic than diffusion of the ceramic elements into the metallic layer.