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Novel Composite Coatings With 3D Coating Architectures for Tribological Applications Fabricated Using Semiconductor Patterning Processes

  • James E. Krzanowski (a1), Jose L. Endrino (a1) and Karl Hirschman (a2)


Composite coatings consisting of hard compounds and soft solid lubricant phases have been actively investigated as tribological coatings for reducing friction while improving wear resistance. In most cases structural modifications in these coatings have been achieved by either natural phase separation or sequential layer deposition. In this study, we explore the concept of creating a three-dimensional structure in a tribological composite coating by using well-established semiconductor patterning methods. Using photolithography, we have patterned the substrate surface with a regular array of micron-size islands. The substrate was then coated with various metal and carbide coatings, including Cr and TiC, using sputter deposition. The substrates were sonicated in a solvent to remove the photoresist islands leaving an array of holes. MoS2 was then deposited onto the substrates. A pin-on-disk friction and wear test was conducted on a TiC/MoS2 sample to examine the effects of these islands on wear morphology. The results showed that the MoS2-filled holes can act as lubricant reservoirs, and the areas of the sample coated with TiC/MoS2 provided better wear protection than areas coated with only MoS2.



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