Deposition and thermal conductivity of diamond-like carbon film on a silicon substrate

LQ Ai and XX Zhang and M Chen and DX Xiong, ACTA PHYSICA SINICA, 65, 096501 (2016).

DOI: 10.7498/aps.65.096501

Diamond-Like Carbon (DLC) is thought to be a potential material in solving heat dissipation problems in light emitting diode module packages. It is of vital importance in evaluating the thermal conductivity of DLC film deposited on a silicon substrate. In this paper, the molecular dynamics method is used to simulate the formation of a DLC film by the deposition of carbon atoms on a isilicon substrate. Tersoff potential is adopted to reproduce the structures and densities of silicon, carbon, and SiC. A silicon substrate consisting of 544 atoms is located at the bottom of the simulation domain. The substrate is kept at a temperature of 600 K through a Noose-Hover thermostat. Carbon atoms are injected into the substrate individually every 0.5 ps at an energy of 1 eV. After a 7.5 ns deposition process, a 4 nm amorphous film containing 15000 carbon atoms is formed. Injected carbon atoms and substrate silicon atoms are intermixed at the bottom layer of the deposited film while the rest of the film contains only carbon atoms. The density of the film decreases slightly with the increase of the height of the deposited film and the average density is 2.8 g/cm(3). Analysis of the coordination number shows that the sp(3) fraction of carbon atoms in the film also decreases with the increase of the height of the deposited film, with a maximum value of 22%. It might be caused by the continuous impacts of the subsequently injected carbon atoms on the previously formed DLC film. The thermal conductivities of the DLC film in the planar and normal directions are calculated by the Green- Kubo method. The thermal conductivity of pure diamond film is also calculated for comparison. The results show that the planar thermal conductivity of the deposited DLC film is approximately half of that of the pure diamond film with the same size. It is higher than the normal thermal conductivity of the deposited film. The thermal conductivities of the DLC film in both planar and normal directions increase with the increase of film density and sp(3) fraction in the DLC film. The results indicate that the local tetrahedral structure of sp(3) carbon atoms contributes to the improvement of thermal conductivity in the DLC film.

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