Electron energy loss spectroscopy of nano-scale CrAlYN/CrN–CrAlY(O)N/Cr(O)N multilayer coatings deposited by unbalanced magnetron sputtering

ROSS, I. M., RAINFORTH, W. M., SEABOURNE, C. R., SCOTT, A. J., WANG, P., MENDIS, B. G., BLELOCH, A. L., REINHARD, C. and HOVSEPIAN, P. (2010). Electron energy loss spectroscopy of nano-scale CrAlYN/CrN–CrAlY(O)N/Cr(O)N multilayer coatings deposited by unbalanced magnetron sputtering. Thin Solid Films, 518 (18), p. 5121.

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Link to published version:: 10.1016/j.tsf.2010.03.012

Abstract

The nano-scale chemical distribution and microstructure of a nitride based wear and oxidation resistant coating prepared by unbalanced magnetron sputtering was investigated. The coating consisted of multilayers of CrAlYN/CrN with a partially oxidised CrAlY(O)N/Cr(O)N oxy-nitride surface layer. The multilayer period of both the nitride and oxy-nitride layers was 3.8 ± 0.2 nm. Nano-scale chemical analysis and imaging was performed using sub-nanometer resolution electron energy loss spectroscopic profiling in a spherical aberration corrected scanning transmission electron microscope. Experimentally determined fine edge structure in electron energy loss spectra were in good agreement with theoretically determined spectra, calculated using electron density functional theory. This analysis indicated the CrN layers to be near stoichiometric with a relative Cr/N ratio of 1.05 ± 0.1 while for the CrAlYN layers the best match between the direct chemical analysis and the simulated edges was (Cr0.5Al0.5)N. A diffuse interface, ∼ 1 nm wide was observed between the CrAlYN and CrN layers. For the outermost oxy-nitride layer, the chromium to nitrogen ratio remains approximately constant though out the layer, while the aluminium decreases as a function of increasing oxygen content.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Materials and Engineering Research Institute > Thin Films Research Centre > Nanotechnology Centre for PVD Research
Identification Number: 10.1016/j.tsf.2010.03.012
Depositing User: Ann Betterton
Date Deposited: 07 Oct 2010 09:54
Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 09:54
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/2532

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