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Development of hard and corrosion resistant titanium nitride coatings using high power impulse magnetron sputtering

  • To render the surface of a material capable of withstanding mechanical and electrochemical loads, and to perform well in service, the deposition of a thin film or coating is a solution. In this project, such a thin film deposition is carried out. The coating material chosen is titanium nitride (TiN) which is a ceramic material known to possess a high hardness (>10 GPa) as well as good corrosion resistance. The method of deposition selected is high power impulse magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS) that results in coatings with high quality and enhanced properties. Sputtering is a physical process that represents the removal or dislodgment of surface atoms by energetic particle bombardment. The term magnetron indicates that a magnetic field is utilized to increase the efficiency of the sputtering process. In HiPIMS, a high power is applied in pulses of low duty cycles to a cathode that is sputtered and that consists of the coating material. As result of the high power, the ionization of the sputtered material takes place giving the possibility to control these species with electric and magnetic field allowing thereby the improvement and tuning of coating properties. However, the drawback of HiPIMS is a low deposition rate. In this project, it is demonstrated first that it is possible to deposit TiN coating using HiPIMS with an optimized deposition rate, by varying the magnetic field strength. It was found that low magnetic field strength (here 22mT) results in a deposition rate similar to that of conventional magnetron sputtering in which the average power is applied continuously, called also direct current magnetron sputtering (dcMS). The high deposition rate at low magnetic field strength was attributed to a reduction in the back attraction probability of the sputtered species. The magnetic field strength did not show noticeable influence on the mechanical properties. The proposed explanation was that the considered peak current density interval 1.22-1.72 A∙cm-2 does not exhibit dramatic changes in the plasma dynamics. In a second part, using the optimized deposition rate, the optimized chemical composition of TiN was determined. It was shown that the chemical composition of TiN does not significantly influence the corrosion performance but impacts considerably the mechanical properties. It was also shown that the corrosion resistance of the coatings deposited using HiPIMS was higher than that of the coatings deposited using dcMS. The third study was the effect of annealing post deposition on the properties of TiN coating deposited using HiPIMS. The hardness of the coatings showed a maximum at 400°C reaching 24.8 GPa. Above 400°C however, a lowering of the hardness was measured and was due to the oxidation of TiN which led to the formation of TiN-TiO2 composites with lower mechanical properties. The coating microscopic properties such as crystal orientation, residual stresses, average grain size were determined from X-ray diffraction data and the roughness was measured using atomic force microscopy. These properties were found to vary with the magnetic field strength, the chemical composition as well as the annealing temperature.

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Author:Anas Ghailane
Referee:Christian Fischer
Advisor:Christian Fischer, Jones Alami
Document Type:Doctoral Thesis
Date of completion:2022/06/03
Date of publication:2022/06/03
Publishing institution:Universität Koblenz, Universitätsbibliothek
Granting institution:Universität Koblenz, Fachbereich 3
Date of final exam:2022/03/15
Release Date:2022/06/03
Tag:corrosion resistance; high power impulse magnetron sputtering; titanium nitride; wear resistance
GND Keyword:Surface Science
Number of pages:112
Ohne die darin veröffentlichten Zeitschriftenaufsätze.
Institutes:Fachbereich 3 / Institut für Integrierte Naturwissenschaften / Institut für Integrierte Naturwissenschaften, Abt. Physik
Dewey Decimal Classification:5 Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik / 53 Physik / 539 Moderne Physik
BKL-Classification:33 Physik / 33.68 Oberflächen, Dünne Schichten, Grenzflächen
Licence (German):License LogoEs gilt das deutsche Urheberrecht: § 53 UrhG