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  • 1.
    Bakhit, Babak
    et al.
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Engberg, David
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Lu, Jun
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Rosén, Johanna
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Högberg, Hans
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Hultman, Lars
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Petrov, Ivan
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering. Univ Illinois, IL 61801 USA.
    Greene, Joseph E
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering. Univ Illinois, IL 61801 USA.
    Greczynski, Grzegorz
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Strategy for simultaneously increasing both hardness and toughness in ZrB2-rich Zr1-xTaxBy thin films2019In: Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology. A. Vacuum, Surfaces, and Films, ISSN 0734-2101, E-ISSN 1520-8559, Vol. 37, no 3, article id 031506Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Refractory transition-metal diborides exhibit inherent hardness. However, this is not always sufficient to prevent failure in applications involving high mechanical and thermal stress, since hardness is typically accompanied by brittleness leading to crack formation and propagation. Toughness, the combination of hardness and ductility, is required to avoid brittle fracture. Here, the authors demonstrate a strategy for simultaneously enhancing both hardness and ductility of ZrB2-rich thin films grown in pure Ar on Al2O3(0001) and Si(001) substrates at 475 degrees C. ZrB2.4 layers are deposited by dc magnetron sputtering (DCMS) from a ZrB2 target, while Zr1-xTaxBy alloy films are grown, thus varying the B/metal ratio as a function of x, by adding pulsed high-power impulse magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS) from a Ta target to deposit Zr1-xTaxBy alloy films using hybrid Ta-HiPIMS/ZrB2-DCMS sputtering with a substrate bias synchronized to the metal-rich portion of each HiPIMS pulse. The average power P-Ta (and pulse frequency) applied to the HiPIMS Ta target is varied from 0 to 1800W (0 to 300 Hz) in increments of 600W (100 Hz). The resulting boron-to-metal ratio, y = B/(Zr+Ta), in as-deposited Zr1-xTaxBy films decreases from 2.4 to 1.5 as P-Ta is increased from 0 to 1800W, while x increases from 0 to 0.3. A combination of x-ray diffraction (XRD), glancing-angle XRD, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), analytical Z-contrast scanning TEM, electron energy-loss spectroscopy, energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and atom-probe tomography reveals that all films have the hexagonal AlB2 crystal structure with a columnar nanostructure, in which the column boundaries of layers with 0 amp;lt;= x amp;lt; 0.2 are B-rich, whereas those with x amp;gt;= 0.2 are Ta-rich. The nanostructural transition, combined with changes in average column widths, results in an similar to 20% increase in hardness, from 35 to 42 GPa, with a simultaneous increase of similar to 30% in nanoindentation toughness, from 4.0 to 5.2MPa root m. Published by the AVS.

  • 2.
    Bakhit, Babak
    et al.
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Petrov, Ivan
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering. Univ Illinois, IL 61801 USA; Univ Illinois, IL 61801 USA.
    Greene, Joseph E
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering. Univ Illinois, IL 61801 USA; Univ Illinois, IL 61801 USA.
    Hultman, Lars
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Rosén, Johanna
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Greczynski, Grzegorz
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
    Controlling the B/Ti ratio of TiBx thin films grown by high-power impulse magnetron sputtering2018In: Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology. A. Vacuum, Surfaces, and Films, ISSN 0734-2101, E-ISSN 1520-8559, Vol. 36, no 3, article id 030604Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    TiBx thin films grown from compound TiB2 targets by magnetron sputter deposition are typically highly over-stoichiometric, with x ranging from 3.5 to 2.4, due to differences in Ti and B preferential-ejection angles and gas-phase scattering during transport from the target to the substrate. Here, the authors demonstrate that stoichiometric TiB2 films can be obtained using highpower impulse magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS) operated in power-controlled mode. The B/Ti ratio x of films sputter-deposited in Ar is controllably varied from 2.08 to 1.83 by adjusting the length of HiPIMS pulses t(on) between 100 and 30 mu s, while maintaining average power and pulse frequency constant. This results in peak current densities J(T), peak ranging from 0.27 to 0.88 A/cm(2). Energy- and time-resolved mass spectrometry analyses of the ion fluxes incident at the substrate position show that the density of metal ions increases with decreasing t(on) due to a dramatic increase in J(T, peak) resulting in the strong gas rarefaction. With t(on)amp;lt;60 mu s (J(T),(peak)amp;gt; 0.4 A/cm(2)), film growth is increasingly controlled by ions incident at the substrate, rather than neutrals, as a result of the higher plasma dencity and, hence, electron-impact ionization probablity. Thus, since sputter- ejected Ti atoms have a higher probability of being ionized than B atoms, due to their lower first-ionization potential and larger ionization cross-section, the Ti concentration in as-deposited films increases with decreasing ton (increasing J(T,peak)) as ionized sputtered species are steered to the substrate by the plasma in order to maintain charge neutrality. Published by the AVS.

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