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J Nanosci Nanotechnol. 2012 Dec;12(12):9094-101.

Wear resistance of TiAlSiN thin coatings.

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ISEP-Instituto Superior de Engenharia do Porto, Rua Dr. António Bernardino de Almeida, 431, 4200-072 Porto, Portugal.


In the last decades TiAIN coatings deposited by PVD techniques have been extensively investigated but, nowadays, their potential development for tribological applications is relatively low. However, new coatings are emerging based on them, trying to improve wear behavior. TiAlSiN thin coatings are now investigated, analyzing if Si introduction increases the wear resistance of PVD films. Attending to the application, several wear test configurations has been recently used by some researchers. In this work, TiAISiN thin coatings were produced by PVD Unbalanced Magnetron Sputtering technique and they were conveniently characterized using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) provided with Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDS), Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM), Electron Probe Micro-Analyzer (EPMA), Micro Hardness (MH) and Scratch Test Analysis. Properties as morphology, thickness, roughness, chemical composition and structure, hardness and film adhesion to the substrate were investigated. Concerning to wear characterization, two very different ways were chosen: micro-abrasion with ball-on-flat configuration and industrial non-standardized tests based on samples inserted in a feed channel of a selected plastic injection mould working with 30% (wt.) glass fiber reinforced polypropylene. TiAISiN coatings with a small amount of about 5% (wt.) Si showed a similar wear behavior when compared with TiAIN reported performances, denoting that Si addition does not improve the wear performance of the TiAIN coatings in these wear test conditions.

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