Microstructural and tribological studies of Al2O3/ZrO2 nano multilayer thin films prepared by pulsed laser deposition

Balakrishnan G1, 7*, Elangovan T2, 3, Shin-Sung Yoo3, Dae-Eun- Kim3, Kuppusami P4, Venkatesh Babu R5, Sastikumar D6, Jung il Song7

1Department of Nanotechnology, Centre of Excellence in Patterned Multiferroics & Nanotechnology,  Bharath Institute of Science and Technology, Bharath University, Chennai 600073, India

2Department of Physics, PSG College of Arts & Science, Coimbatore 641014, India

3Center for Nano-Wear, Yonsei University, Seoul-120749, South Korea

4Centre for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, Sathyabama University, Chennai 600119, India

5Department of Mechanical Engineering, Sri Lakshmi Ammal Engineering College, Chennai 600073, India

6Department of Physics, National Institute of Technology, Tiruchirappalli 620015, India

7Department of Mechanical Engineering, Changwon National University, Changwon 641773, South Korea

Adv. Mater. Lett., 2017, 8 (4), pp 410-417

DOI: 10.5185/amlett.2017.6434

Publication Date (Web): Mar 14, 2017

E-mail: balaphysics76@gmail.com


Nanostructured single layer aluminium oxide (Al2O3), single layer zirconium oxide (ZrO2) and the (Al2O3/ZrO2) nano multilayer films were deposited on Si (100) substrates at an optimized oxygen pressure of 3×10-2 mbar at room temperature by pulsed laser deposition. The Al2O3 layer was kept constant at 5 nm, while ZrO2 layer thickness was varied from 5 nm to 20 nm. The X-ray diffraction (XRD) studies of single layer of Al2O3 film indicated the cubic γ-Al2O3, while the single layer of ZrO2 indicated both the monoclinic and tetragonal phases. The Al2O3/ZrO2 multilayer films of 5/5 nm and 5/10 nm indicated the tetragonal phase of ZrO2 with nanocrystalline nature. The FESEM and AFM studies showed the dense and smooth morphology of the films. The pin-on disc revealed that the 5/10 nm multilayer film has low friction coefficient ~ 0.10. The wear rate of multilayers film is half of the wear rate of the single layer films and 5/10 nm multilayer film showed a reduced wear rate when it is compared to other single and multilayers. The Al2O3-ZrO2 ceramics find wide applications in wear and corrosion resistance components, high temperature applications and bio-implant materials.


Thin films, nano multilayer, microstructure, tribology, pulsed laser deposition.

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