Effect of aluminum contents on sputter deposited CrAlN thin films

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Article number012079
Journal / PublicationIOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 19 Feb 2018


Title2017 International Conference on Mechanical Engineering and Applied Composite Materials (MEACM 2017)
CityHong Kong
Period23 - 24 November 2017



Pure CrN and CrAlN films with varied Al concentrations were prepared onto Si(100) substrates by an unbalanced reactive dc-magnetron sputtering system. The crystal structure, chemical states, and microstructure of the films were characterized by X-ray diffraction, X-ray photoelectron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy whereas mechanical properties were determined by nano-indentation measurements. XRD results showed a prominent (200) reflection in both CrN and CrAlN films. Results demonstrate that CrAlN films formed a solid solution and doping of Al atoms replace the Cr atoms affecting the lattice parameter and crystallization of the films. All Al doped films were of B1 NaCl-type structure, demonstrating that CrAlN films primarily crystallized in cubic structure. Microstructural investigation by TEM for a CrAlN film containing Al content of 24.1 at.%, revealed that there exists an amorphous/nanocrystalline domains (grains of about ∼ 11 nm) and hardness increases 22% when compared with pure CrN film.

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