Structure, phase composition, and nanohardness of vacuum-annealed multilayer fullerite/aluminum films

Research paper by L. V. Baran

Indexed on: 02 Feb '16Published on: 02 Feb '16Published in: Inorganic Materials


The influence of the number of layers and thermal annealing on the structure, elemental and phase compositions, and nanohardness of multilayer fullerite/aluminum films has been studied by scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, X-ray diffraction, X-ray microanalysis, and nanoindentation. The results demonstrate that sequential growth of five aluminum layers and four fullerite layers, each 50 nm in thickness, on oxidized single-crystal silicon substrates leads to the formation of textured films, which retain 111 texture after vacuum annealing at 620 K (τ = 5 h). In the case of the growth of bilayer films of greater thickness, C60(200 nm)/Al(300 nm), the fullerite and aluminum have a polycrystalline structure with no growth texture. Thermal annealing of the bilayer films leads to the formation of a new phase, AlxC60. The materials studied here possess enhanced nanohardness compared to pure aluminum and fullerite films.