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Cathodic Arc Synthesis of Ti-Si-C-N Thin Films from Ternary Cathodes
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2010 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Cathodic arc deposition is a powerful technique for thin film synthesis, associated with explosive phase transformations resulting in an energetic and highly ionized plasma. This Thesis presents film growth through arc deposition from compound cathodes of Ti3SiC2, providing source material for plasma and films rich in Si and C. The interest for the resulting Ti-Si-C-N films is inspired by the two ternaries Ti-Si-N and Ti-C-N, both successfully applied as corrosion  and wear resistant films, with a potential for synergistic effects in the quarternary system.

When using a rotating substrate fixture setup, which is common in high capacity commercial deposition systems, the repeated passage though the plasma zone results in growth layers in the films. This effect has been observed in several coating systems, in deposition of various materials, but has not been explained in detail. The here investigated layers are characterized by a compositional modulation in Si and Ti content, which is attributed primarily to preferential resputtering in segments of rotation when the plasma has high incidence angle towards the substrate normal. For depositions in a non-reactive environment, the films consist of primarily understoichiometric TiCx, Ti, and silicide phases, and display a modest hardness (20-30 GPa) slightly improved by a decreasing layer thickness. Hence, the side effects of artificial layering from substrate rotation in deposition systems should be recognized.

Adding N2 to the deposition process results in reactive growth of nitride material, formed in a wide range of compositions, and thereby enabling investigation of films in little explored parts of the Ti-Si-C-N system. The structure and properties of such films, comprising up to 12 at% Si and 16 at% C, is highly dependent on the supply of N2 during deposition. Superhard (45-50 GPa) cubic-phase (Ti,Si)(C,N) films with a nanocrystalline feathered structure is formed at N-content of 25-30 at%. At higher N2 deposition pressure, C and Si segregate to column and grain boundaries and the cubic phase assumes a more pronounced nitride character. This transformation is accompanied by substantially reduced film hardness to 20 GPa. Ti-Si-C-N films thus display a rich variety of structures with favorable mechanical properties, but in the regime of high Si and C content, the amount of N must be carefully controlled to avoid undesirable formation of weak grain boundary phases based on Si, C and N.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press , 2010. , 37 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 1456
National Category
Natural Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-61994Local ID: LIU-TEK-LIC-2010:27ISBN: 978-91-7393-273-8 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-61994DiVA: diva2:370993
Presentation
2010-12-09, Planck, Fysikhuset, Campus Valla, Linköping University, Linköping, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2010-12-01 Created: 2010-11-18 Last updated: 2010-12-01Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Layer Formation by Resputtering in Ti-Si-C Hard Coatings during Large Scale Cathodic Arc Deposition
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Layer Formation by Resputtering in Ti-Si-C Hard Coatings during Large Scale Cathodic Arc Deposition
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2011 (English)In: Surface & Coatings Technology, ISSN 0257-8972, E-ISSN 1879-3347, Vol. 205, no 15, 3923-3930 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper presents the physical mechanism behind the phenomenon of self-layering in thin films made by industrial scale cathodic arc deposition systems using compound cathodes and rotating substrate fixture. For Ti-Si-C films, electron microscopy and energy dispersive x-ray spectrometry reveals a trapezoid modulation in Si content in the substrate normal direction, with a period of 4 to 23 nm dependent on cathode configuration. This is caused by preferential resputtering of Si by the energetic deposition flux incident at high incidence angles when the substrates are facing away from the cathodes. The Ti-rich sub-layers exhibit TiC grains with size up to 5 nm, while layers with high Si-content are less crystalline. The nanoindentation hardness of the films increases with decreasing layer thickness.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2011
National Category
Natural Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-61991 (URN)10.1016/j.surfcoat.2011.02.007 (DOI)000289606000004 ()
Note

Original Publication: Anders Eriksson, Jianqiang Zhu, Naureen Ghafoor, Mats Johansson, Jacob Sjölen, Jens Jensen, Magnus Odén, Lars Hultman and Johanna Rosén, Layer Formation by Resputtering in Ti-Si-C Hard Coatings during Large Scale Cathodic Arc Deposition, 2011, Surface & Coatings Technology, (205), 15, 3923-3930. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.surfcoat.2011.02.007 Copyright: Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. http://www.elsevier.com/

Available from: 2010-11-18 Created: 2010-11-18 Last updated: 2017-12-12
2. Ti-Si-C-N Thin Films Grown by Reactive Arc Evaporation from Ti3SiC2 Cathodes
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Ti-Si-C-N Thin Films Grown by Reactive Arc Evaporation from Ti3SiC2 Cathodes
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2011 (English)In: Journal of Materials Research, ISSN 0884-2914, E-ISSN 2044-5326, Vol. 26, 874-881 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Ti-Si-C-N thin films were deposited onto WC-Co substrates by industrial scale arc evaporation from Ti3SiC2 compound cathodes in N2 gas. Microstructure and hardness were found to be highly dependent on the wide range of film compositions attained, comprising up to 12 at.% Si and 16 at.% C. Nonreactive deposition yielded films consisting of understoichiometric TiCx, Ti and silicide phases with high (27 GPa) hardness. At a nitrogen pressure of 0.25-0.5 Pa, below that required for N saturation, superhard, 45-50 GPa, (Ti,Si)(C,N) films with a nanocrystalline feathered structure were formed. Films grown above 2 Pa displayed crystalline phases of more pronounced nitride character, but with C and Si segregated to grain boundaries to form weak grain boundary phases. In abundance of N, the combined presence of Si and C disturb cubic phase growth severely and compromises the mechanical strength of the films.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Cambrdige University Press, 2011
National Category
Natural Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-61992 (URN)10.1557/jmr.2011.10 (DOI)
Note

Original Publication: Anders Eriksson, Jianqiang Zhu, Naureen Ghafoor, Jens Jensen, Grzegorz Greczynski, Mats Johansson, Jacob Sjölen, Magnus Odén, Lars Hultman and Johanna Rosén, Ti-Si-C-N Thin Films Grown by Reactive Arc Evaporation from Ti3SiC2 Cathodes, 2011, Journal of Materials Research, (26), 874-881. http://dx.doi.org/10.1557/jmr.2011.10 Copyright: Mrs Materials Research Society http://www.mrs.org/

Available from: 2010-11-18 Created: 2010-11-18 Last updated: 2017-12-12

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