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Title: Single-beam plasma source deposition of carbon thin films

A single-beam plasma source was developed and used to deposit hydrogenated amorphous carbon (a-C:H) thin films at room temperature. The plasma source was excited by a combined radio frequency and direct current power, which resulted in tunable ion energy over a wide range. The plasma source could effectively dissociate the source hydrocarbon gas and simultaneously emit an ion beam to interact with the deposited film. Using this plasma source and a mixture of argon and C2H2 gas, a-C:H films were deposited at a rate of ∼26 nm/min. The resulting a-C:H film of 1.2 µm thick was still highly transparent with a transmittance of over 90% in the infrared range and an optical bandgap of 2.04 eV. Young’s modulus of the a-C:H film was ∼80 GPa. The combination of the low-temperature high-rate deposition of transparent a-C:H films with moderately high Young’s modulus makes the single-beam plasma source attractive for many coatings applications, especially in which heat-sensitive and soft materials are involved. The single-beam plasma source can be configured into a linear structure, which could be used for large-area coatings.

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Publisher / Repository:
American Institute of Physics
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Review of Scientific Instruments
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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