Mechanical properties of PECVD hydrogenated amorphous carbon coatings via nanoindentation and nanoscratching techniques

P. Bruno, G. Cicala, A. M. Losacco, P. Decuzzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations

Abstract

The good combination of chemical and physical properties of hydrogenated amorphous carbon (a-C:H) coatings makes them suitable for tribological, biomedical and microelectronic applications. In this work, nano-indentation and nano-scratching tests have been used to determine the mechanical properties of a-C:H films produced via plasma chemical vapour deposition from CH4-Ar gas mixtures. A capacitive ion-etching reactor has been used for film deposition with a bias and a mixture composition ranging between 0 V and -400 V and 21.4% and 100%, respectively. The variation of Young's modulus (E) and hardness (H) through film thickness has been assessed by continuous multi-cycle indentations, and sub-surface maxima of approximately 150 GPa and 20 GPa have been measured, respectively. A maximum critical load (Lc) for film delamination of approximately 170 mN has been estimated by nano-scratching. A discussion on bias voltage and mixture composition effect on E, H and Lc is presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-264
Number of pages6
JournalSurface and Coatings Technology
Volume180-181
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2004

Keywords

  • A-C:H films
  • Mechanical properties
  • Nano-indentation
  • Nano-scratching
  • PECVD

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces

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