Tribological behavior of hafnium diboride thin films

A. Chatterjee, S. Jayaraman, J. E. Gerbi, N. Kumar, J. R. Abelson, P. Bellon, A. A. Polycarpou, J. P. Chevalier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Transition metal diborides and their coatings offer an excellent combination of high hardness, high chemical stability and high thermal conductivity, thus they are excellent candidates for a wide range of tribological applications. In this work, stoichiometric hafnium diboride films were grown by chemical vapor deposition from a single-source, heteroatom-free precursor Hf(BH4)4 under conditions that afford highly conformal and smooth films. HfB2 films of thickness ∼ 0.6 μm deposited on steel substrates were subjected to pin-on-disk wear testing against a counter face disc of AISI 440C martensitic stainless steel. Based on wear measurements, both as-deposited (X-ray amorphous) and annealed (nanocrystalline) samples showed very high wear resistance compared to uncoated samples. For the annealed samples, SEM analysis indicated the formation of a wear resistant composite body in the wear scar, even at depths far exceeding the film thickness, which appears to dramatically improve wear resistance. No mild-to-severe wear transition was observed which indicates that mild wear occurred throughout the wear test. This ensemble of results, when considered in the light of high contact pressures (∼ 700 MPa) used in the study, makes the HfB2 material potentially attractive for wear-resistant applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4317-4322
Number of pages6
JournalSurface and Coatings Technology
Issue number7 SPEC. ISS.
StatePublished - Dec 20 2006


  • Chemical vapor deposition
  • Hafnium diboride
  • Pin-on-disk test

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces


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