Ageing Studies of Plasma Deposited Organic Films by Surface Chemical Analysis (ESCA, ToF-SIMS, XAS)


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The formation of plasma-polymerized materials made from organic molecules is a technologically attractive way to obtain films with unique properties for life science applications. Surface properties like bio-compatibility, wettability, etc., can be adjusted by tailoring the chemical functionalization. It is well known that after deposition these films undergo post-plasma reactions, especially when they are exposed to ambient atmosphere. Most often, in applications these films are not used immediately after their deposition – they are usually stored for a certain time. Therefore there is a need for a development of analytical procedures enabling studies of ageing phenomena of plasma chemically deposited films. With the help of these studies a better understanding of basic post-plasma reaction phenomena as well as relevant empiric information for practical applications can be obtained. However, a detailed chemical characterization of plasma chemically deposited films is a great challenge for the analysts because of the co-existence of a number of different chemical species. We investigated r.f. plasma-polymerized organic films by using photoelectron spectroscopy for chemical analysis (ESCA), spectroscopy of the near edge X-ray absorption fine structures (NEXAFS) and time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectroscopy (TOF-SIMS). Ethylene, styrene, allyl alcohol and allyl amine were used as monomers. A dedicated plasma preparation chamber was designed and added to the main analysis chamber of the respective spectrometer. This approach offers the possibility to study plasma-polymerized films in situ and, subsequently, the influence of post-plasma reactions. The important effect of air exposure of the film, in terms of plasma technology denominated as “ageing”, can be studied subsequentially step by step by this unique approach.



Materials Science Forum (Volumes 539-543)

Main Theme:

Edited by:

T. Chandra, K. Tsuzaki, M. Militzer , C. Ravindran




W. E.S. Unger et al., "Ageing Studies of Plasma Deposited Organic Films by Surface Chemical Analysis (ESCA, ToF-SIMS, XAS)", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 539-543, pp. 623-628, 2007

Online since:

March 2007




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