The Ti-B-N System: Nanocomposite nc-TiN/a-(TiB2, BN) and Nano-Multilayer nc-TiN/a-TiBN Thin Films
Abstract:The nanostructures and mechanical properties of nanocomposite nc-TiN/a-(TiB2, BN) and nanostructured multilayers nc-TiN/a-TiBN were investigated using X-ray diffraction (XRD), high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), microindentation, and stress measurements. It was found that the monolayer Ti-B-N thin films consisted of nanometer-sized crystalline (nc-) Ti(N, B) embedded into amorphous (a-) (TiB2, BN) matrix. When B content was below ∼16 at.%, two different-sized nanocrystallites with mean grain sizes of ∼3 and 9 nm respectively were embedded in a-TiB2. With increasing B incorporation (>∼27 at.%), more uniform nanograins was embedded a-(TiB2, BN). Incorporation of B not only decreased the size of nanocrystallites, but also gave rise to twinning deformation in nanocrystallites. A maximum hardness of ∼44 GPa was achieved at B content of 19 at.%. It was also found that the nanostructure and mechanical behaviors of nc-TiN/a-TiBN multilayers was dependent on the modulation length (bilayer thickness Λ). Decrease of Λ made the preferred orientation of nc-TiN gradually transform from (200) to (111). A maximum hardness of ∼30 GPa was achieved at Λ = 1.8 nm. Deflection from this Λ value decreased hardness. By contrast, the residual compressive stress value monotonically increased with decrease of Λ. The enhancement of the hardness was due to the coherent stresses and the structural barriers to dislocation motion in the interface.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: May 1, 2008
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