Epitaxial NaCl structure d-TaNx(001): Electronic transport properties, elastic modulus, and hardness versus N/Ta ratio
2001 (English)In: Journal of Applied Physics, ISSN 0021-8979, Vol. 90, no 6, 2879-2885 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
While metastable Bl-NaCl-structure d-TaNx. is presently used in a variety of hard coating, wear-resistant, and diffusion barrier applications, it is a complex material exhibiting a wide single-phase field, x?0.94-1.37, and little is known about its fundamental properties. Here, we report physical properties of epitaxial d-TaNx. layers grown as a function of x on MgO(00) by ultrahigh vacuum reactive magnetron sputter deposition. The room-temperature resistivity (? = 225 µO cm), hardness (H = 30.9 GPa), and elastic modulus (E = 455 GPa) of d-TaNx(001) are independent of x over the range 0.94-1.22. However, changes in the electronic structure associated with increasing x>1.22 lead to an increase in ? with a decrease in H and E. All d-TaNx(001) layers exhibit negative temperature coefficients of resistivity between 20 and 400 K due to weak carrier localization. d-TaNx is superconducting with the highest critical temperature, 8.45 K, obtained for layers with the lowest N/Ta ratio, x=0.94. Based upon the above results, combined with the fact that the relaxed lattice constant a0 shows only a very weak dependence on x, we propose that the wide phase field in d-TaNx is due primarily to antisite substitutions of Ta on N (and N on Ta) sites, rather than to cation and anion vacancies. To first order, antisite substitutions in TaNx are isoelectronic and hence have little effect on charge carrier density. At sufficiently high N/Ta ratios, however, simple electron-counting arguments are no longer valid since large deviations from stoichiometry alter the character of the band structure itself. © 2001 American Institute of Physics.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2001. Vol. 90, no 6, 2879-2885 p.
Engineering and Technology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-47261DOI: 10.1063/1.1391214OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-47261DiVA: diva2:268157