PVD processes are carried out under vacuum conditions. The process involved four steps:
During this stage, a target, consisting of the material to be deposited is bombarded by a high ebergy source suchg as a beam of electrons or ions. This dislodges atoms from the surface of the target, ‘vaporising’ them.
This process simply consists of the movement of ‘vaporised’ atoms from the target to the substrate to be coated and will generally be a straight line affair.
In some cases coatings will consist of metal oxides, nitrides, carbides and other such materials. In these cases, the target will consist of the metal. The atoms of metal will then react with the appropriate gas during the transport stage. For the above examples, the reactive gases may be oxygen, nitrogen and methane.
In instances where the coating consists of the target material alone, this step would not be part of the process.
Depeding on the actual process, some reactions between target materials and the reactive gases may also take place at the substrate surface simultaneously with the deposition process.
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