Mechanical properties of amorphous boron carbon nitride films produced by dual gun sputtering

S. C. Chien, S. Chattopadhyay*, L. C. Chen, S. T. Lin, K. H. Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Mechanical properties and bonding characterisation of amorphous boron carbon nitride (a-BCxNy) films prepared by dual gun sputtering system was studied. The a-BCxNy films deposited at different temperatures and having different carbon concentrations revealed that at lower deposition temperatures (≤200 °C), carbon contents in the range of ∼25 at.% produced the harder films where the hardness and elastic modulus were found to be 12.5 and ∼150 GPa, respectively. For higher deposition temperatures (≥400 °C), carbon content in the range of 40 at.% produced the harder films. The chemical composition and phase identification were done collectively by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and Auger electron spectroscopy. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy was used to analyse the hybridisation levels of the constituent elements and to show the evolution of different phases in the a-BCxNy network. The low hardness levels were attributed to the unfavourable C(sp)-N bonding configuration in the network, a possible phase separation and high oxygen contents (∼10 at.%) in the film.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1463-1471
Number of pages9
JournalDiamond and Related Materials
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2003


  • Amorphous boron carbon nitride
  • Dual gun sputtering
  • FTIR
  • X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy


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