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Thin metal and SiOx films deposited by the anodic vacuum arc technique



Surface and coatings technology 74-75 (1995), pp.838-843
ISSN: 0257-8972
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IPA ()
Dünnes Material; Dünnfilmtechnik; Dünnschicht; thin films

Thin metal and SiOx films were deposited on synthetic materials using a vacuum arc with a consumable anode. In contrast to a cathodic vacuum arc, the anodic vacuum arc generates a droplet-free plasma that consists of only the evaporated anode material in the entire volume. The degree of ionization can easily be affected by the geometrical position of the anode with respect to the cathode, and the ion energy can be adjusted by a bipolar bias. With this technology, it is possible to deposit thin homogeneous metal films with an extremely high rate of growth. The films are distinguished by their high purity and bulk character. The temperaure of the substrates during deposition is much below 100 oC and the ignition takes place below 10-2 Pa. To deposit SiOx films on synthetic materials, we evaporated Si, SiO or SiO2 in an oxygen atmosphere with a pressure ranging between 10-1 and 5 Pa (reactive anodic arc deposition). The permeability of the deposited films for visible light is a function o f the oxygen partial pressure Po2 within the system. The permeability increases but the growth rate decreases with increasing Po2. Furthermore, we investigated the effect of a pretreatment of the synthetic material substrates by plasma etching with different gas composition (CF4 and O2) on the adhesion of the SiOx films.