Low-temperature thin film nitride transformation reactions

David Hook, Seymen Aygun, William Borland, Jon Paul Maria

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


This study illustrates a novel method of transforming between two refractory nitride thin films at temperatures well below their respective melting points. Silicon nitride (Si3N4) is an excellent thermal and electronic insulator, with applications in the microelectronic, automotive and technical ceramic industries. Thermodynamically, there is a significant decrease in the Gibb's Free Energy inherent in the transformation between Si3N4 and a number of refractory metal nitrides if they are in contact at high temperature; however, these transformation reactions are limited in the pure state by a kinetic barrier at any temperature appreciably lower than the melting point of Si3N4 (≈2173 K). Previous results presented at this conference [1] illustrated the successful conversion of powdered amorphous Si3N4 to TiN. The transformation is made possible by a liquid phase present in a number of Ti-based alloys at temperatures in the vicinity of 800 °C. Current results indicate the full conversion of SiNx nitride thin films into conducting TiN. Such transformations provide a novel pathway for metallization with a variety of electronic applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProgram - 38th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2012
Number of pages4
StatePublished - Nov 26 2012
Event38th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2012 - Austin, TX, United States
Duration: Jun 3 2012Jun 8 2012

Publication series

NameConference Record of the IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference
ISSN (Print)0160-8371


Other38th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2012
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityAustin, TX

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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