The oxidization behavior and mechanical properties of ultrananocrystalline diamond films at high temperature annealing

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

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-18
Journal / PublicationApplied Surface Science
Online published21 Aug 2014
Publication statusPublished - 30 Oct 2014


Ultrananocrystalline diamond (UNCD) films prepared by hot filament chemical vapor deposition (HFCVD) were annealed at 1000 °C in low degree vacuum under a pressure of 4000 Pa. The correlation between the mechanical and structural properties was investigated to understand the oxidization behavior of UNCD films after high temperature annealing. At the early stage of annealing (∼30 min), the amorphous carbon and graphite in grain boundaries are selectively oxidized firstly along the clusters' gaps, with the Young's modulus and hardness decreasing rapidly revealed by nanoindentation results. A special annealing time of ∼30-60 min is found to exist as a turning point that the mechanical properties changing trend has a transition, because of the diamond grains starting to be oxidized. With the annealing time increasing to 180 min, the nanoindentation depth increases from ∼70 to ∼90 nm and the Young's modulus and hardness decrease more slowly with almost keeping constant of ∼383 and ∼35 GPa, respectively. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) results show that a steady 30-nm-thick oxidized layer has been formed on the top-surface and keeps a balance of the speed between films being oxidized and the carbon oxidation being broken down.

Research Area(s)

  • Annealing, Mechanical properties, Microstructure, Selective thermal oxidation, Ultrananocrystalline diamond films