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Coatings 2019, 9(3), 206; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings9030206

Correlative Experimental and Theoretical Investigation of the Angle-Resolved Composition Evolution of Thin Films Sputtered from a Compound Mo2BC Target

1
Materials Chemistry, RWTH Aachen University, Kopernikusstr. 10, 52074 Aachen, Germany
2
Department of Physics and Astronomy, Uppsala University, Lägerhyddsvägen 1, 75120 Uppsala, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 March 2019 / Revised: 15 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Strategies in Thin Film Engineering by Magnetron Sputtering)
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Abstract

The angle-resolved composition evolution of Mo-B-C thin films deposited from a Mo2BC compound target was investigated experimentally and theoretically. Depositions were carried out by direct current magnetron sputtering (DCMS) in a pressure range from 0.09 to 0.98 Pa in Ar and Kr. The substrates were placed at specific angles α with respect to the target normal from 0 to ±67.5°. A model based on TRIDYN and SIMTRA was used to calculate the influence of the sputtering gas on the angular distribution function of the sputtered species at the target, their transport through the gas phase, and film composition. Experimental pressure- and sputtering gas-dependent thin film chemical composition data are in good agreement with simulated angle-resolved film composition data. In Ar, the pressure-induced film composition variations at a particular α are within the error of the EDX measurements. On the contrary, an order of magnitude increase in Kr pressure results in an increase of the Mo concentration measured at α = 0° from 36 at.% to 43 at.%. It is shown that the mass ratio between sputtering gas and sputtered species defines the scattering angle within the collision cascades in the target, as well as for the collisions in the gas phase, which in turn defines the angle- and pressure-dependent film compositions. View Full-Text
Keywords: physical vapor deposition; Mo2BC; Monte Carlo simulation; scattering; density functional theory physical vapor deposition; Mo2BC; Monte Carlo simulation; scattering; density functional theory
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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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Achenbach, J.-O.; Mráz, S.; Primetzhofer, D.; Schneider, J.M. Correlative Experimental and Theoretical Investigation of the Angle-Resolved Composition Evolution of Thin Films Sputtered from a Compound Mo2BC Target. Coatings 2019, 9, 206.

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