Study of tribological properties of coating/substrate system in micrometer and nanometer scales with a scanning probe microscope

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Physics and Astronomy


We have used a scanning probe microscope equipped with a custom made diamond tip to study tribological properties of an inorganic-organic hybrid Si, O, H, and C coating produced by plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) on siloxane/acrylic/polycarbonate multilayer substrates and on glass substrates. The micro indentation hardness and micro mar resistance were measured under different normal forces, and the critical loads for cracking, delamination, and chipping were evaluated. The effects of substrate, coating thickness, and interfacial adhesion on tribological properties of the coating/substrate systems are discussed. The results show that increasing coating thickness and strengthening interfacial adhesion can effectively inhibit cracking, delamination, and chipping of the coating/substrate systems under wear. Improving the physical properties of the PECVD coating and substrate, such as enhancing elastic recovery, reducing plasticity and brittleness, and matching the properties of coating and substrate better can improve the wear resistance of the systems further. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

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