Thermal characterization of TiCxOy thin films
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Thermal wave characterization of thin films used in industrial applications can be a useful tool, not just to get information on the films' thermal properties, but to get information on structural-physical parameters, e.g. crystalline structure and surface roughness, and on the film deposition conditions, since the thermal film properties are directly related to the structural-physical parameters and to the deposition conditions. Different sets of TiCXOY thin films, deposited by reactive magnetron sputtering on steel, have been prepared, changing only one deposition parameter at a time. Here, the effect of the oxygen flow on the thermal film properties is studied. The thermal waves have been measured by modulated IR radiometry, and the phase lag data have been interpreted using an Extremum method by which the thermal coating parameters are directly related to the values and modulation frequencies of the relative extrema of the inverse calibrated thermal wave phases. Structural/morphological characterization has been done using X-ray diffraction (XRD) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). The characterization of the films also includes thickness, hardness, and electric resistivity measurements. The results obtained so far indicate strong correlations between the thermal diffusivity and conductivity, on the one hand, and the oxygen flow on the other hand.
KeywordsAtomic Force Microscopy European Physical Journal Special Topic Thermal Wave Electric Resistivity Measurement Reactive Magnetron
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