Titanium aluminium nitride

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Aluminium titanium nitride (AlTiN) coated endmills using cathodic arc deposition technique AlTiNCoatedEndmill NanoShieldPVD Thailand.JPG
Aluminium titanium nitride (AlTiN) coated endmills using cathodic arc deposition technique

Titanium aluminium nitride (TiAlN) or aluminium titanium nitride (AlTiN; for aluminium contents higher than 50%) is a group of metastable hard coatings consisting of nitrogen and the metallic elements aluminium and titanium. This compound as well as similar compounds(such as TiN and TiCN) are most notably used for coating machine tools such and endmills and drills to change their properties, such as increased thermal stability and/or wear resistance. Four important compositions (metal content 100 wt.%) are deposited in industrial scale by physical vapor deposition methods:

The fundamental reasons why TiAlN coatings outperform pure Titanium nitride (TiN) coatings are considered to be:

The age hardening phenomenon has been shown to originate in a mismatch in the quantum mechanical electronic structure of TiN and AlN. [4] [5]

The coatings are mostly deposited by cathodic arc deposition or magnetron sputtering. Even though most TiAlN and AlTiN coatings are industrially synthesized using alloy targets with specific percentages of aluminium and titanium it is possible to produce TiAlN coatings with pure Al and Ti targets using a cathodic arc deposition technique. TiAlN and AlTiN coatings from pure Al and pure Ti targets by Cathodic arc deposition have been produced industrially by NanoShield PVD Thailand since 1999. By using separate target technology it is possible to offer more flexibility regarding the structure and composition of the coating.

Selected properties of Al66Ti34N are:

One commercial coating type used to improve the wear resistance of tungsten carbide tools is the AlTiN-Saturn from Sulzer Metaplas. [6]

The coatings are sometimes doped with at least one of the elements carbon, silicon, boron, oxygen and yttrium in order to improve selected properties for specific applications. These coatings are also used to create multilayer systems. For example, they can be used in combination with TiSiXN like those used in the Mpower coating family of Sulzer Metaplas. The coating types mentioned above are applied to protect tools including special tools for medical applications. They are also used as decorative finishes.

One derivative of TiAlN coating technology is the nanocomposite TiAlSiN (titanium aluminium silicon nitride) which was developed by SHM in the Czech Republic and now marketed by Platit of Switzerland. The nanocomposite TiAlSiN coating exhibits superhard hardness and outstanding high temperature workability.

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Titanium</span> Chemical element, symbol Ti and atomic number 22

Titanium is a chemical element; it has symbol Ti and atomic number 22. Found in nature only as an oxide, it can be reduced to produce a lustrous transition metal with a silver color, low density, and high strength, resistant to corrosion in sea water, aqua regia, and chlorine.

A thin film is a layer of material ranging from fractions of a nanometer (monolayer) to several micrometers in thickness. The controlled synthesis of materials as thin films is a fundamental step in many applications. A familiar example is the household mirror, which typically has a thin metal coating on the back of a sheet of glass to form a reflective interface. The process of silvering was once commonly used to produce mirrors, while more recently the metal layer is deposited using techniques such as sputtering. Advances in thin film deposition techniques during the 20th century have enabled a wide range of technological breakthroughs in areas such as magnetic recording media, electronic semiconductor devices, integrated passive devices, LEDs, optical coatings, hard coatings on cutting tools, and for both energy generation and storage. It is also being applied to pharmaceuticals, via thin-film drug delivery. A stack of thin films is called a multilayer.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Titanium diboride</span> Chemical compound

Titanium diboride (TiB2) is an extremely hard ceramic which has excellent heat conductivity, oxidation stability and wear resistance. TiB2 is also a reasonable electrical conductor, so it can be used as a cathode material in aluminium smelting and can be shaped by electrical discharge machining.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Galling</span> Form of wear caused by adhesion between sliding surfaces

Galling is a form of wear caused by adhesion between sliding surfaces. When a material galls, some of it is pulled with the contacting surface, especially if there is a large amount of force compressing the surfaces together. Galling is caused by a combination of friction and adhesion between the surfaces, followed by slipping and tearing of crystal structure beneath the surface. This will generally leave some material stuck or even friction welded to the adjacent surface, whereas the galled material may appear gouged with balled-up or torn lumps of material stuck to its surface.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Titanium nitride</span> Ceramic material

Titanium nitride is an extremely hard ceramic material, often used as a physical vapor deposition (PVD) coating on titanium alloys, steel, carbide, and aluminium components to improve the substrate's surface properties.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Zirconium nitride</span> Chemical compound

Zirconium nitride is an inorganic compound used in a variety of ways due to its properties.

Cathodic arc deposition or Arc-PVD is a physical vapor deposition technique in which an electric arc is used to vaporize material from a cathode target. The vaporized material then condenses on a substrate, forming a thin film. The technique can be used to deposit metallic, ceramic, and composite films.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Nitriding</span> Nitrogen diffusion case-hardening process

Nitriding is a heat treating process that diffuses nitrogen into the surface of a metal to create a case-hardened surface. These processes are most commonly used on low-alloy steels. They are also used on titanium, aluminium and molybdenum.

Electron-beam physical vapor deposition, or EBPVD, is a form of physical vapor deposition in which a target anode is bombarded with an electron beam given off by a charged tungsten filament under high vacuum. The electron beam causes atoms from the target to transform into the gaseous phase. These atoms then precipitate into solid form, coating everything in the vacuum chamber with a thin layer of the anode material.

Micromy is a hard surface coating company based in Täby, Sweden. The company specializes in applying hard coating to a wide range of substrate materials using a PVD process. Depending on the application, different coating film materials can be produced, such as TiN, TiC, TiNC, AlTiN or DLC. The coating is mainly used for industrial applications based on the different properties of the materials. However, the PVD process results in a finish such that many coatings are equally suitable for decorative purposes.

Aluminium carbide, chemical formula Al4C3, is a carbide of aluminium. It has the appearance of pale yellow to brown crystals. It is stable up to 1400 °C. It decomposes in water with the production of methane.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Vacuum deposition</span> Method of coating solid surfaces

Vacuum deposition is a group of processes used to deposit layers of material atom-by-atom or molecule-by-molecule on a solid surface. These processes operate at pressures well below atmospheric pressure. The deposited layers can range from a thickness of one atom up to millimeters, forming freestanding structures. Multiple layers of different materials can be used, for example to form optical coatings. The process can be qualified based on the vapor source; physical vapor deposition uses a liquid or solid source and chemical vapor deposition uses a chemical vapor.

Platit AG is a Swiss company that manufactures and markets coating equipment for the manufacturing cutting tool industry.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Physical vapor deposition</span> Method of coating solid surfaces with thin films

Physical vapor deposition (PVD), sometimes called physical vapor transport (PVT), describes a variety of vacuum deposition methods which can be used to produce thin films and coatings on substrates including metals, ceramics, glass, and polymers. PVD is characterized by a process in which the material transitions from a condensed phase to a vapor phase and then back to a thin film condensed phase. The most common PVD processes are sputtering and evaporation. PVD is used in the manufacturing of items which require thin films for optical, mechanical, electrical, acoustic or chemical functions. Examples include semiconductor devices such as thin-film solar cells, microelectromechanical devices such as thin film bulk acoustic resonator, aluminized PET film for food packaging and balloons, and titanium nitride coated cutting tools for metalworking. Besides PVD tools for fabrication, special smaller tools used mainly for scientific purposes have been developed.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sputter deposition</span> Method of thin film application

Sputter deposition is a physical vapor deposition (PVD) method of thin film deposition by the phenomenon of sputtering. This involves ejecting material from a "target" that is a source onto a "substrate" such as a silicon wafer. Resputtering is re-emission of the deposited material during the deposition process by ion or atom bombardment. Sputtered atoms ejected from the target have a wide energy distribution, typically up to tens of eV. The sputtered ions can ballistically fly from the target in straight lines and impact energetically on the substrates or vacuum chamber. Alternatively, at higher gas pressures, the ions collide with the gas atoms that act as a moderator and move diffusively, reaching the substrates or vacuum chamber wall and condensing after undergoing a random walk. The entire range from high-energy ballistic impact to low-energy thermalized motion is accessible by changing the background gas pressure. The sputtering gas is often an inert gas such as argon. For efficient momentum transfer, the atomic weight of the sputtering gas should be close to the atomic weight of the target, so for sputtering light elements neon is preferable, while for heavy elements krypton or xenon are used. Reactive gases can also be used to sputter compounds. The compound can be formed on the target surface, in-flight or on the substrate depending on the process parameters. The availability of many parameters that control sputter deposition make it a complex process, but also allow experts a large degree of control over the growth and microstructure of the film.

High-power impulse magnetron sputtering is a method for physical vapor deposition of thin films which is based on magnetron sputter deposition. HIPIMS utilises extremely high power densities of the order of kW⋅cm−2 in short pulses (impulses) of tens of microseconds at low duty cycle of < 10%. Distinguishing features of HIPIMS are a high degree of ionisation of the sputtered metal and a high rate of molecular gas dissociation which result in high density of deposited films. The ionization and dissociation degree increase according to the peak cathode power. The limit is determined by the transition of the discharge from glow to arc phase. The peak power and the duty cycle are selected so as to maintain an average cathode power similar to conventional sputtering (1–10 W⋅cm−2).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Chromium nitride</span> Chemical compound

Chromium nitride is a chemical compound of chromium and nitrogen with the formula CrN. It is very hard, and is extremely resistant to corrosion. It is an interstitial compound, with nitrogen atoms occupying the octahedral holes in the chromium lattice: as such, it is not strictly a chromium(III) compound nor does it contain nitride ions (N3−). Chromium forms a second interstitial nitride, dichromium nitride, Cr2N.

Aluminium magnesium boride or Al3Mg3B56, colloquially known as BAM, is a chemical compound of aluminium, magnesium and boron. Whereas its nominal formula is AlMgB14, the chemical composition is closer to Al0.75Mg0.75B14. It is a ceramic alloy that is highly resistive to wear and has an extremely low coefficient of sliding friction, reaching a record value of 0.04 in unlubricated and 0.02 in lubricated AlMgB14−TiB2 composites. First reported in 1970, BAM has an orthorhombic structure with four icosahedral B12 units per unit cell. This ultrahard material has a coefficient of thermal expansion comparable to that of other widely used materials such as steel and concrete.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cemented carbide</span> Type of composite material

Cemented carbides are a class of hard materials used extensively for cutting tools, as well as in other industrial applications. It consists of fine particles of carbide cemented into a composite by a binder metal. Cemented carbides commonly use tungsten carbide (WC), titanium carbide (TiC), or tantalum carbide (TaC) as the aggregate. Mentions of "carbide" or "tungsten carbide" in industrial contexts usually refer to these cemented composites.

The +4 oxidation state dominates titanium chemistry, but compounds in the +3 oxidation state are also numerous. Commonly, titanium adopts an octahedral coordination geometry in its complexes, but tetrahedral TiCl4 is a notable exception. Because of its high oxidation state, titanium(IV) compounds exhibit a high degree of covalent bonding.


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