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Plastic Deformation Induced by Nanoindentation Test Applied on ZrN/Si3N4 Multilayer Coatings

School of Electromechanical Engineering, Guangdong University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, China
College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361005, China
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Boris Straumal
Coatings 2018, 8(1), 11;
Received: 20 November 2017 / Revised: 22 December 2017 / Accepted: 25 December 2017 / Published: 27 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hybrid Surface Coatings & Process (Selected Papers from HyMaP 2017))
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ZrN/Si3N4 multilayer coating that alternates with either nanocrystalline ZrN or amorphous Si3N4 interlayers was fabricated by reactively magnetron sputtering in an Ar-N2 mixture atmosphere. The thicknesses of the nanocrystalline ZrN and the amorphous Si3N4 interlayers are ~12.5 and 2.5 nm, respectively. The ZrN/Si3N4 coating exhibits a promoted hardness of 28.6 ± 1.2 GPa when compared to the binary ZrN. Microstructure evolution just underneath the nanoindentation impression of the ZrN/Si3N4 multilayer coating has been investigated. The result indicates that both ZrN nanograin rotations and plastic flow of the Si3N4 interlayers contribute to the permanent deformation of the multilayer coating induced by the nanoindentation. In addition, the introduction of the a-Si3N4 interlayers hinders both the initiation and propagation of microcracks when the multilayer coating was applied to the scratch test. The propagation deflection of the microcracks was observed attributed to the heterogenous interface, which produces the hardness promotion of the multilayer coating eventually. View Full-Text
Keywords: ZrN/Si3N4; multilayer coating; plastic deformation; grain rotations; microcracks ZrN/Si3N4; multilayer coating; plastic deformation; grain rotations; microcracks

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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 (CC BY 4.0).

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Wu, Z.; Zhong, X.; Liu, C.; Wang, Z.; Dai, W.; Wang, Q. Plastic Deformation Induced by Nanoindentation Test Applied on ZrN/Si3N4 Multilayer Coatings. Coatings 2018, 8, 11.

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