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Coatings 2013, 3(4), 268-300; doi:10.3390/coatings3040268
Article

Gas Permeation, Mechanical Behavior and Cytocompatibility of Ultrathin Pure and Doped Diamond-Like Carbon and Silicon Oxide Films

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 and 3,*
1 Group of Functional Surfaces, Institute of Surface Technologies and Photonics, JOANNEUM RESEARCH Forschungsges.m.b.H., Leobner Strasse 94, A-8712 Niklasdorf, Austria 2 Institute of Surface Technologies and Photonics, JOANNEUM RESEARCH Forschungsges.m.b.H., Franz-Pichler-Strasse 30, A-8160 Weiz, Austria 3 Center for Medical Research, Medical University Graz, Stiftingtalstrasse 24, A-8010 Graz, Austria 4 Institute of Hygiene, Microbiology and Environmental Medicine, Medical University Graz, Universitätsplatz 4, A-8010 Graz, Austria 5 Department of Orthopedics and Orthopedic Surgery, Medical University Graz, Auenbruggerplatz 5, A-8010 Graz, Austria 6 Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Robotics, AGH University of Science and Technology, 30 Adama Mickiewicza Av., 30-059 Cracow, Poland 7 Institute of Metallurgy and Materials Sciences, Polish Academy of Sciences, ul. Reymonta 25, 30-059 Krakow, Poland 8 Institute of Physics, University of Leoben, Franz Josef Strasse 18, A-8700 Leoben, Austria
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 September 2013 / Revised: 20 November 2013 / Accepted: 6 December 2013 / Published: 16 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Medical Device Coatings)
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Abstract

Protective ultra-thin barrier films gather increasing economic interest for controlling permeation and diffusion from the biological surrounding in implanted sensor and electronic devices in future medicine. Thus, the aim of this work was a benchmarking of the mechanical oxygen permeation barrier, cytocompatibility, and microbiological properties of inorganic ~25 nm thin films, deposited by vacuum deposition techniques on 50 µm thin polyetheretherketone (PEEK) foils. Plasma-activated chemical vapor deposition (direct deposition from an ion source) was applied to deposit pure and nitrogen doped diamond-like carbon films, while physical vapor deposition (magnetron sputtering in pulsed DC mode) was used for the formation of silicon as well as titanium doped diamond-like carbon films. Silicon oxide films were deposited by radio frequency magnetron sputtering. The results indicate a strong influence of nanoporosity on the oxygen transmission rate for all coating types, while the low content of microporosity (particulates, etc.) is shown to be of lesser importance. Due to the low thickness of the foil substrates, being easily bent, the toughness as a measure of tendency to film fracture together with the elasticity index of the thin films influence the oxygen barrier. All investigated coatings are non-pyrogenic, cause no cytotoxic effects and do not influence bacterial growth.
Keywords: thin films; diamond-like carbon; permeability; cytocompatibility thin films; diamond-like carbon; permeability; cytocompatibility
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Lackner, J.M.; Meindl, C.; Wolf, C.; Fian, A.; Kittinger, C.; Kot, M.; Major, L.; Czibula, C.; Teichert, C.; Waldhauser, W.; Weinberg, A.-M.; Fröhlich, E. Gas Permeation, Mechanical Behavior and Cytocompatibility of Ultrathin Pure and Doped Diamond-Like Carbon and Silicon Oxide Films. Coatings 2013, 3, 268-300.

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