Transactions of Nonferrous Metals Society of China
JOURNAL OF RAILWAY SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING
|Vol. 9 No. 4 December 1999|
（State Key Laboratory of Metal Matrix Composits; Shanghai Jiao-Tong University; Shanghai 200030; P. R. China）
Abstract:The polycrystalline Si3N4/TiN ceramic nano-multilayer films have been synthesized on Si substrates by a reactive magnetron Sputtering technique, aiming at investigating the effects of modulation ratio and modulation period on the microhardness and to elucidate the hardening mechanisms of the synthesized nanomultilayer films. The results showed that the hardness of Si3N4/TiN nano-multilayers is affected not only by modulation period, but also by modulation ratio. The hardness reaches its maximum value when modulation period equa1s a critical value λ0, which is about 12 nm with a modulation ratio of 3: 1. The maximum hardness value is about 40% higher than the value calculated from the rule of mixtures. The hardness of nano-multilayer thin films was found to decrease rapidly with increasing or decreasing modulation period from the Point of λ0. The microstructures of the nano-multilayer films have been investigated using XRD and TEM. Based on experimental results, the mechanism of the superhardness in this system was proposed.
Key words: Si_3N_4/TiN; multilayer films; micro hardness; micro structures