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Nanobuckling and x-ray photoelectron spectra of carbyne-rich tetrahedral carbon films deposited by femtosecond laser ablation at cryogenic temperatures

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5 Author(s)
Hu, A. ; Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Waterloo, 200 University Ave. West, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1 ; Griesing, S. ; Rybachuk, M. ; Lu, Q.-B.
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The growth, surface morphology, and electronic binding states of diamondlike films deposited by femtosecond laser ablation on Si wafers at 77 K have been studied in order to elucidate the mechanical properties of this material. Nanoscale buckling has been observed and is found to have a morphology that exhibits a strong dependence on film thickness. Nanobuckling takes the form of quasiperiodic discrete pointlike excursions extending over widths of 50–100 nm. This morphology converts to a regular structure of grooves/ripples with a modulation period of 30–50 nm as the film thickness increases to 300–600 nm. We find that microhardness is not changed in regions where nanobuckling is present. Analysis of Raman and x-ray photoelectron spectra (XPS) demonstrate that nanobuckling can be attributed to the relaxation of internal stress and to the formation of strong C-Si covalent bonds at the C-Si interface. XPS spectra show that the C 1s peak is broadened compared to that found in spectra of films deposited using nanosecond laser ablation. This is found to be consistent with a composition that includes sp, sp2, and sp3-bonded carbon. The unique composition of these films suggests that these materials may find application in electromechanical devices.

Published in:

Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:102 ,  Issue: 7 )