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Oxide Film By PVD Technology

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Is it possible to produce a oxide film of titanium, zirconium and aluminium, such as titania, zirconia and alumina respectively, by PVD technology? If it can be, what is the reactive gas? If someone know, please let me know.

Thank you very much for your help.

David Koo
- China


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It is possible to deposit oxides of titanium, zirconium, and aluminum by PVD, but not easy. The problem is that the one tends to oxidize the deposition system as well. If sputtering, the rate of deposition is dramatically lower if the target gets oxidized. Northwestern University has been looking at aluminum oxide deposition using a pulsed bias on the sputter target. In cathodic arc deposition, oxide formation on the anode causes the arc to extinguish. We've found a way to block the oxygen from the anode and deposited erbium oxide. Some work has been done on oxide deposition using electron beam evaporation at both Fraunhofer in Germany (aluminum oxide) and at Penn State (zirconium oxide). In fact, there is an item in the latest issue of Advanced Materials and Processes (ASM International journal) on the Penn State work.

treglio portrait Jim Treglio
American Faucet &
  Coatings Corporation


Vista, California



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The other PVD possibility is using AC magnetron sputtering. This method does not have the oxidizing anode problem that the other methods have. You can use this method with a plasma emission monitoring system to create very reproducible, high deposition rate films.

Usually the reactive gas is oxygen.


John Davis
- Berthoud, Colorado, USA

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