The growth and structural evolution of carbon nitride (CNx) films, deposited by nitrogen ion beam assisted magnetron sputtering, were studied. The deposition rate, composition ([N]/[C] ratio), structure, and mechanical properties of CNx films were investigated as a function of nitrogen ion energy in the range of 30 eV-1 keV. For the ion energy below 200 eV, the increasing fraction of curved structure as revealed by transmission electron microscopy and sp3 hybridized bonding were attributed to structural transition and improved mechanical properties of CNx films. However, when increasing nitrogen ion energy above 200 eV, the [N]/[C] ratio in film was inversely proportional to the nitrogen ion energy and preferential distribution of nitrogen in sp2 hybridized site induced the retransition from curved structure to planar structure. From these results, it was found that CNx films exhibit two different structural and bonding characteristics with ion energy and this transition of film characteristics is closely related to the nitrogen content in the film.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Materials Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering