Structural, compositional, optical and colorimetric characterization of TiN-nanoparticles
We present results of an investigation of TiN nanoparticles, which were produced by laser ablation/evaporation and adiabatic expansion with the nanoparticle beam apparatus LUCAS. Compositional and structural characterization, using secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and selected area electron diffraction (SAED), revealed that crystalline and almost stoichiometric particles were formed and that they are susceptible to oxidation. Furthermore, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) analysis showed that TiN nanoparticles exhibit cuboid shapes. The size distributions were obtained using the edge length as parameter. They are fairly broad and the mean particle diameter depends on the seeding gas flow (the pressure) that is applied to the ablation chamber during production. In situ optical transmission spectra of the TiN nanoparticles deposited on a quartz substrate indicate a pronounced single Mie resonance at around 1.7 eV and an absorption flank starting at approximately 3.0 eV. The experimental optical extinction spectra of different samples were fitted using Mie theory calculations. The dielectric function of bulk TiN was modified to account for size and interface damping of the Mie resonance. Due to the distinct absorption band, TiN may be used as a color pigment. The dependence of the color stimulus on the extinction cross-section as well as on the product of the particle concentration and the sample thickness were examined. Chromaticity coordinates were derived according to the CIE 1976 (L * a * b *) color space from the in situ optical transmission spectra.
KeywordsSelect Area Electron Diffraction Extinction Spectrum Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy Optical Transmission Spectrum Optical Extinction
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