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Influence of N2 Gas Flow Ratio and Working Pressure on Amorphous Mo–Si–N Coating during Magnetron Sputtering

Hibrid Materials Center (HMC), Department of Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials Engineering, Sejong University, 209 Neungdong-ro, Gwangjin-gu, Seoul 05006, Korea
Division of Advanced Materials Engineering, Kongju National University, Cheonan, Chungnam 330-717, Korea
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Coatings 2020, 10(1), 34;
Received: 26 November 2019 / Revised: 20 December 2019 / Accepted: 28 December 2019 / Published: 1 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Surface Modification and Functionalization of High-Temperature Alloys)
In this study, Mo–Si–N coatings were deposited on Si wafers and tungsten carbide substrates using a reactive direct current magnetron sputtering system with a MoSi powder target. The influence of sputtering parameters, such as the N2 gas flow ratio and working pressure, on the microstructure and mechanical properties (hardness (H), elastic modulus (E), and H/E ratio) of the Mo–Si–N coatings was systematically investigated using X-ray diffractometry (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), nanoindentation, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The gas flow rate was a significant parameter for determining the crystallinity and microstructure of the coatings. A Mo2N crystalline coating could be obtained by a high N2 gas flow ratio of more than 35% in the gas mixture, whereas an amorphous coating could be formed by a low N2 gas flow ratio of less than 25%. Furthermore, the working pressure played an important role in controlling the smooth surface and densified structure of the Mo–Si–N coating. For the amorphous Mo–Si–N coating deposited with the lowest working pressure (1 mTorr), the hardness, elastic modulus, and H/E ratio reached from 9.9 GPa, 158.8 GPa, and 0.062 up to 17.9 GPa, 216.1 GPa, and 0.083, respectively. View Full-Text
Keywords: Mo–Si–N; sputtering; amorphous coating; density; hardness Mo–Si–N; sputtering; amorphous coating; density; hardness
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Lim, K.S.; Kim, Y.S.; Hong, S.H.; Song, G.; Kim, K.B. Influence of N2 Gas Flow Ratio and Working Pressure on Amorphous Mo–Si–N Coating during Magnetron Sputtering. Coatings 2020, 10, 34.

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