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Time evolution of ion fluxes incident at the substrate plane during reactive high-power impulse magnetron sputtering of groups IVb and VIb transition metals in Ar/N-2
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4898-5115
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Thin Film Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
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.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2955-4897
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; Univ Illinois, IL 61801 USA.
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2018 (English)In: Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology. A. Vacuum, Surfaces, and Films, ISSN 0734-2101, E-ISSN 1520-8559, Vol. 36, no 2, article id 020602Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Reactive transition-metal (TM) nitride film growth employing bias-synchronized high power impulse magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS) requires a detailed knowledge of the time evolution of metal-and gas-ion fluxes incident at the substrate plane in order to precisely tune momentum transfer and, hence, provide the recoil density and energy necessary to eliminate film porosity at low deposition temperatures without introducing significant film stress. Here, the authors use energy- and time-dependent mass spectrometry to analyze the evolution of metal-and gas-ion fluxes at the substrate plane during reactive HiPIMS sputtering of groups IVb and VIb TM targets in Ar/N-2 atmospheres. The time-and energy-integrated metal/gas ion ratio NMe+/Ng+ incident at the substrate is significantly lower for group IVb TMs (ranging from 0.2 for Ti to 0.9 for Hf), due to high N-2 reactivity which results in severely reduced target sputtering rates and, hence, decreased rarefaction. In contrast, for less reactive group VIb metals, sputtering rates are similar to those in pure Ar as a result of significant gas heating and high NMe+/Ng+ ratios, ranging from 2.3 for Cr to 98.1 for W. In both sets of experiments, the peak target current density is maintained constant at 1 A/cm(2). Within each TM group, NMe+/N(g+)scales with increasing metal-ion mass. For the group-VIb elements, sputtered-atom Sigmund-Thompson energy distributions are preserved long after the HiPIMS pulse, in contradistinction to group-IVb TMs for which the energy distributions collapse into narrow thermalized peaks. For all TMs, the N+ flux dominates that of N-2(+) ions, as the molecular ions are collisionally dissociated at the target, and N+ exhibits ion energy distribution functions resembling those of metal ions. The latter result implies that both N+ and Me+ species originate from the target. High-energy Ar+ tails, assigned to ionized reflected-Ar neutrals, are observed with heavier TM targets. Published by the AVS.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
A V S AMER INST PHYSICS , 2018. Vol. 36, no 2, article id 020602
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Inorganic Chemistry
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URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-147140DOI: 10.1116/1.5016241ISI: 000426978500015OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-147140DiVA, id: diva2:1199504
Note

Funding Agencies|Swedish Research Council VR Grant [2014-5790]; Aforsk foundation [16359]; Swedish Government Strategic Research Area in Materials Science on Functional Materials at Linkoping University [2009 00971]; Knut and Alice Wallenberg foundation [KAW 2015.0043]

Available from: 2018-04-20 Created: 2018-04-20 Last updated: 2021-12-28

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Greczynski, GrzegorzZhirkov, IgorPetrov, IvanGreene, Joseph ERosén, Johanna
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