The Role of Ambient Gas and Pressure on the Structuring of Hard Diamond-Like Carbon Films Synthesized by Pulsed Laser Deposition

Andrei Popescu, George Stan, Liviu Duta, Cristina Nita, Camelia Popescu, Vasile-Adrian Surdu, Marius-Adrian Husanu, Bogdan Bita, Rudy Ghisleni, Cameliu Himcinschi, Valentin Craciun
2015 Materials  
Hard carbon thin films were synthesized on Si (100) and quartz substrates by the Pulsed Laser Deposition (PLD) technique in vacuum or methane ambient to study their suitability for applications requiring high mechanical resistance. The deposited films' surface morphology was investigated by scanning electron microscopy, crystalline status by X-ray diffraction, packing and density by X-ray reflectivity, chemical bonding by Raman and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, adherence by "pull-out"
more » ... by "pull-out" measurements and OPEN ACCESS Materials 2015, 8 3285 mechanical properties by nanoindentation tests. Films synthesized in vacuum were a-C DLC type, while films synthesized in methane were categorized as a-C:H. The majority of PLD films consisted of two layers: one low density layer towards the surface and a higher density layer in contact with the substrate. The deposition gas pressure played a crucial role on films thickness, component layers thickness ratio, structure and mechanical properties. The films were smooth, amorphous and composed of a mixture of sp 3 -sp 2 carbon, with sp 3 content ranging between 50% and 90%. The thickness and density of the two constituent layers of a film directly determined its mechanical properties.
doi:10.3390/ma8063284 fatcat:zfxiqv7ourbalp2nfkgw2sh52m