Ion-assisted deposition system
In ion-assisted deposition (IAD), the substrate is exposed to a secondary ion beam operating at a lower power than the sputter gun. Usually a Kaufman source, like that used in IBS, supplies the secondary beam. IAD can be used to deposit carbon in diamond-like form on a substrate. Any carbon atoms landing on the substrate which fail to bond properly in the diamond crystal lattice will be knocked off by the secondary beam. NASA used this technique to experiment with depositing diamond films on turbine blades in the 1980s. IAD is used in other important industrial applications such as creating tetrahedral amorphous carbon surface coatings on hard disk platters and hard transition metal nitride coatings on medical implants.
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