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Chin. Phys. B, 2016, Vol. 25(7): 075201    DOI: 10.1088/1674-1056/25/7/075201

Structural and mechanical properties of Al-C-N films deposited at room temperature by plasma focus device

Z A Umar1, R Ahmad2, R S Rawat3, M A Baig1, J Siddiqui4, T Hussain4
1 National Centre for Physics, Quaid-i-Azam University Campus, Islamabad, 54320 Pakistan;
2 Department of Physics, GC University, Lahore 54000, Pakistan;
3 NSSE, National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637616, Singapore;
4 Centre for Advanced Studies in Physics, GC University, Lahore 54000, Pakistan
Abstract  The Al-C-N films are deposited on Si substrates by using a dense plasma focus (DPF) device with aluminum fitted central electrode (anode) and by operating the device with CH4/N2 gas admixture ratio of 1:1. XRD results verify the crystalline AlN (111) and Al3CON (110) phase formation of the films deposited using multiple shots. The elemental compositions as well as chemical states of the deposited Al-C-N films are studied using XPS analysis, which affirm Al-N, C-C, and C-N bonding. The FESEM analysis reveals that the deposited films are composed of nanoparticles and nanoparticle agglomerates. The size of the agglomerates increases at a higher number of focus deposition shots for multiple shot depositions. Nanoindentation results reveal the variation in mechanical properties (nanohardness and elastic modulus) of Al-C-N films deposited with multiple shots. The highest values of nanohardness and elastic modulus are found to be about 11 and 185 GPa, respectively, for the film deposited with 30 focus deposition shots. The mechanical properties of the films deposited using multiple shots are related to the Al content and C-N bonding.
Keywords:  dense plasma focus      XPS      field emission scanning electron microscope      elastic modulus  
Received:  08 January 2016      Revised:  02 March 2016      Published:  05 July 2016
PACS:  52.59.Hq (Dense plasma focus)  
  79.60.-i (Photoemission and photoelectron spectra)  
  68.37.Vj (Field emission and field-ion microscopy) (Elastic moduli)  
Corresponding Authors:  Z A Umar     E-mail:

Cite this article: 

Z A Umar, R Ahmad, R S Rawat, M A Baig, J Siddiqui, T Hussain Structural and mechanical properties of Al-C-N films deposited at room temperature by plasma focus device 2016 Chin. Phys. B 25 075201

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