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Experimental studies on epitaxially grown TiN and VN films

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Kutschej, K., Rashkova, B., Shen, J., Edwards, D., Mitterer, C., & Dehm, G. (2007). Experimental studies on epitaxially grown TiN and VN films. Thin Solid Films, 516(2-4), 369-373. doi:10.1016/j.tsf.2007.06.104.

TiN and VN single-layers were grown on (100) and (111)MgO substrates as model systems for future studies of V diffusion and understanding the evolution of the lubricous V2O5 phase on coating surfaces. The present study aims at elucidating the epitaxial quality and microstructure of TiN and VN films grown by unbalanced d.c. magnetron sputtering fromTi andV targets in Ar+N2 on (100) and (111)MgO substrates.X-ray diffraction and electron back-scatter diffraction give evidence for epitaxial growth of the films on both MgO substrate orientations. Transmission electron microscopy studies reveal a cube-on-cube orientation for all film/substrate combinations. The higher dislocation density and larger fraction of misoriented grains for VN films onMgOis explained by the higher growth rate and lattice mismatch compared to TiN. Nanoindentationmeasurements of the (100) oriented singlecrystal films reveal hardness values of ∼35 GPa for TiN and ∼23 GPa for VN.