Valizadeh, R., Colligon, John, Donnelly, S. E., Faunce, C.A., Park, D. and Kheyrandish, H. (1994) Composition and Structure of Zirconium Nitride Films Produced by Ion Assisted Deposition. MRS Proceedings, 354. ISSN 1946-4274

The growth mechanism of ZrNx films produced by reactive ion beam sputtering with or without concurrent low energy ion bombardment of argon or nitrogen has been investigated. The effect of substrate temperature in the range of 300-680K, partial pressure of nitrogen and ion/atom arrival rate on the composition and microstructure of the films have been studied. RBS analysis has confirmed that the nitrogen content varies over wide range 0-60 at. %, depending on the nitrogen/zirconium arrival rate, and the ion assist flux but it is independent of the ion assist energy. TEM analysis shows that the films are non-columnar and polycrystalline with grain sizes l-15nm which depend on the nitrogen content and the deposition temperature.