Main page | Journal list | Log-in

H. Caquineau, I. Enache, Nicolas Gherardi, N. Naude, Francoise Massines

Influence of gas flow dynamics on discharge stability and on the uniformity of atmospheric pressure PECVD thin film

Journal of Physics D 42 (2009) 777

The aim of this paper is to improve the understanding of the mechanisms controlling the uniformity of thin films made by atmospheric pressure plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposition (AP-PECVD). To reach this goal, the influence of the gas flow-rate and injection design on the thin film thickness uniformity is studied through experiments and numerical simulation in the case of silica-like layers deposited from silane and nitrous oxide using a nitrogen Townsend dielectric barrier discharge. Results show that whatever the gas flow-rate, when the gas is injected uniformly parallel to the substrate, the obtained layer is always uniform along the substrate width, while when the gas is injected perpendicularly to the substrate, the width-uniformity of the layers decreases when the gas flow-rate increases. The layer non-uniformity is related to the penetration of gas recirculation into the discharge zone, which was confirmed by computational fluid dynamics. This link is corroborated experimentally by a clear improvement of the deposit uniformity when the discharge cell dimensions are modified in order to reduce the recirculation influence on the discharge. A plausible hypothesis for the layer uniformity dependence on the recirculation is the possible enhancement of powder formation and growth in the recirculation zone: when the particle size is large enough, electrons may attach on the powder inducing electron depletion at the origin of the discharge instabilities.

This article may also be available to you online

Cited Articles

  1. Trunec D., Navrátil Z., Sťahel P., Zajíčková L., Buršíková V.,
    Deposition of Thin Organosilicon Polymer Films in Atmospheric Pressure Glow Discharge,
    Journal of Physics D 37 (2004) 2112–2120