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High Precision Detection of Change in Intermediate Range Order of Amorphous Zirconia-Doped Tantala Thin Films Due to Annealing

Prasai, K. and Gustafson, E. K. and Vajente, G. (2019) High Precision Detection of Change in Intermediate Range Order of Amorphous Zirconia-Doped Tantala Thin Films Due to Annealing. Physical Review Letters, 123 (4). Art. No. 045501. ISSN 0031-9007. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.123.045501.

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Understanding the local atomic order in amorphous thin film coatings and how it relates to macroscopic performance factors, such as mechanical loss, provides an important path towards enabling the accelerated discovery and development of improved coatings. High precision x-ray scattering measurements of thin films of amorphous zirconia-doped tantala (ZrO_2−Ta_2O_5) show systematic changes in intermediate range order (IRO) as a function of postdeposition heat treatment (annealing). Atomic modeling captures and explains these changes, and shows that the material has building blocks of metal-centered polyhedra and the effect of annealing is to alter the connections between the polyhedra. The observed changes in IRO are associated with a shift in the ratio of corner-sharing to edge-sharing polyhedra. These changes correlate with changes in mechanical loss upon annealing, and suggest that the mechanical loss can be reduced by developing a material with a designed ratio of corner-sharing to edge-sharing polyhedra.

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Vajente, G.0000-0002-7656-6882
Additional Information:© 2019 American Physical Society. Received 6 February 2019; published 23 July 2019. We acknowledge the support of the LSC Center for Coatings Research, jointly funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation (GBMF). In particular, the authors are grateful for support through NSF Grant No. PHY-1707866 and No. PHY-1708175, and GBMF Grant No. 6793. C. L., F. S., and R. S. are grateful for support from the NSERC, CFI, and FQRNT. D. A. D. is grateful for support from NSF Grant No. DMR-1506836. I.W. M. is supported by a Royal Society Research Fellowship. The authors are grateful to Frances Hellman and Sjoerd Roorda for useful comments and discussion. We are also grateful to Ric Shimshock at MLD Technologies for useful discussions and for providing thin film samples. We acknowledge support from Bill Baloukas and Ludvik Martinu of École Polytechnique de Montréal for access to ellipsometry and stylus profilometry instruments. Use of the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515. We would like to thank the Sherlock Cluster at Stanford University for providing computational resources and support that contributed to these research results.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation6793
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)UNSPECIFIED
Canada Foundation for InnovationUNSPECIFIED
Fonds de Recherche du Québec – Nature et technologiesUNSPECIFIED
Department of Energy (DOE)DE-AC02-76SF00515
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190723-102013237
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:97352
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:23 Jul 2019 20:32
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 17:30

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