We report on the evaluation of ion-beam induced damage in α-quartz and its dynamic annealing behavior in the temperature range between 80 and 1050 K using Rutherford backscattering spectrometry in channeling geometry. The results illustrate that the critical temperature for inhibiting amorphization during irradiation is about Tc≈940 K. The critical fluence φc for amorphization is independent of the temperature up to 550 K, but strongly increases at higher temperatures. The activation energy for the diffusion of defects in the collision cascade or at the amorphous/crystalline interface is found to be 0.28±0.02 eV. The dynamic annealing mechanism is explained by the vacancy out-diffusion model of Morehead and Crowder. © 1999 American Institute of Physics.