Structural and morphological investigations on DC-magnetron-sputtered nickel films deposited on Si (100)

Geetha Priyadarshini, B.; Aich, S.; Chakraborty, M.
May 2011
Journal of Materials Science;May2011, Vol. 46 Issue 9, p2860
Academic Journal
Pure nickel thin films were deposited on Si (100) substrates under different conditions of sputtering using direct current magnetron sputtering from a nickel metal target. The different deposition parameters employed for this study are target power, argon gas pressure, substrate temperature and substrate-bias voltage. The films exhibited high density of void boundaries with reduction in <111> texture deposited under high argon gas pressures. At argon gas pressure of 5 mTorr and target power of 300 W, Ni deposition rate was ~40 nm/min. In addition, coalescence of grains accompanied with increase in the film texture was observed at high DC power. Ni films undergo morphological transition from continuous, dense void boundaries to microstructure free from voids as the substrate-bias voltage was increased from −10 to −90 V. Furthermore, as the substrate temperature was increased, the films revealed strong <111> fiber texture accompanied with near-equiaxed grain structure. Ni films deposited at 770 K showed the layer-by-layer film formation which lead to dense, continuous microstructure with increase in the grain size.


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