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Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 29, Issue 22, pp 5880–5886 | Cite as

Chromium catalysed silicon nitridation

  • C. G. Cofer
  • J. A. Lewis
Article

Abstract

Silicon powder compacts were fabricated with various amounts of chromium (0–5 at %) deposited onto the surface of the silicon powder by a solution-deposition process. These compacts were heated to several maximum temperatures in the range 1100–1250‡C in a flowing 10% H2/90% N2 atmosphere to evaluate the effect of the chromium content on the silicon nitridation. It was observed that silicon compacts containing 5 at % Cr were fully nitrided in approximately 3 h at 1150‡C, while less than 8% nitridation was achieved for pure-silicon compacts (with 0 at % Cr) compacts under the same conditions. Single-crystal silicon wafers with a 50 nm chromium layer were also nitrided; this provided a planar geometry, which facilitated our study of the catalysis mechanism. The rate-controlling process was shown to be first order, which may be indicative of a nucleation-and-growth mechanism, which is commonly observed for α-silicon-nitride formation. This work demonstrates the feasibility of producing reaction-bonded silicon nitride at low temperatures using chromium catalysis, and it indicates the potential for fabricating fibre-reinforced silicon-nitride composites containing thermally sensitive fibres.

Keywords

Chromium Nitrided Silicon Wafer Silicon Nitride Catalysis Mechanism 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. G. Cofer
    • 1
  • J. A. Lewis
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Materials Science and EngineeringUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbanaUSA

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