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Measurements of Thickness, Surface Roughness and Corrosion Performance of 1-10 nm Thick CNx Films

[+] Author Affiliations
Dejun Li, Yanfeng Chen, Yip-Wah Chung

Northwestern University, Evanston, IL

Paper No. 2003-TRIB-344, pp. 99-102; 4 pages
  • STLE/ASME 2003 International Joint Tribology Conference
  • Magnetic Storage Symposium: Frontiers of Magnetic Hard Disk Drive Tribology and Technology
  • Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA, October 26–29, 2003
  • Conference Sponsors: Tribology Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3705-X | eISBN: 0-7918-3704-1
  • Copyright © 2003 by ASME


Nitrogenated carbon (CNx ) films were synthesized by using pulsed dc magnetron sputtering. When grown with substrate tilt of 45° and rotation speed of 20–25 rpm, the root-mean-square surface roughness is ∼0.3 nm when sampled over 20×20 μm2 areas, increasing to ∼0.4 nm when sampled over ∼0.05×3 cm2 using x-ray reflectivity measurements. X-ray reflectivity measurements showed that the mass density of these CNx films is ∼2.0 gm/cc, independent of film thickness from ∼1 to 10 nm, consistent with ion beam analysis. CNx films deposited with substrate tilt of 45° and rotation speed of 20–25 rpm have about 1/3 fewer corrosion spots per unit area than those without. Reducing CNx thickness from 3 to 1 nm results in marked increase in corrosion currents.

Copyright © 2003 by ASME



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