Order, disorder and mixing: The atomic structure of amorphous mixtures of titania and tantala
The atomic structure of mixtures of titania (TiO_2) and tantala (Ta_2O_5) ion-beam sputtered amorphous thin film coatings at various post-deposition annealing temperatures have been studied using Ta LIII and Ti K edge Extended X-ray Absorption Fine Structure (EXAFS). The results indicate that post-deposition annealing produces subtle changes in the short range order (< 1 nm) for samples which remain amorphous. We also show that titania–tantala mixtures maintain a structure similar to that of pure tantala, with the titanium atoms preferring to sit at the second shell distance, which is similar to the Ta–Ta distance seen in the pure tantala structure. A discussion is also included on interpretation of the general trends identified in the EXAFS data and how this relates to previous and ongoing studies of the structure and mechanical loss measurements of titania–tantala coatings.
© 2016 Elsevier B.V. Received 12 November 2015, Revised 25 January 2016, Accepted 8 February 2016, Available online 21 February 2016.