Humidity resistant MoS2 coatings deposited by unbalanced magnetron sputtering

Journal article
(Original article)

Publication Details

Author(s): Vierneusel B, Schneider T, Tremmel S, Wartzack S, Gradt T
Journal: Surface & Coatings Technology
Publisher: Elsevier
Publication year: 2013
Volume: 235
Journal issue: 11
Pages range: 97–107
ISSN: 0257-8972
Language: English


MoS2 is a suitable solid lubricant for environments free of oxygen or water vapor (i.e. vacuum). Humid air degrades film properties due to oxidation accompanied by high wear and increasing coefficients of friction. The present study aims at the further development of sputtered pure MoS2 coatings, extending their applicability to varying environmental conditions by increasing the resistance against humidity. The systematic coating development process is supported by using an experimental Box-Behnken design with variations of the deposition parameters cathode voltage, target/substrate distance, temperature and argon gas pressure. In contrast to common one-factor-at-a-time (OFAT) studies, this approach enables a determination of interactions between deposition process parameters and tribological-mechanical MoS2 film properties. The tribological improvement focuses on a maximization of wear resistance in air and vacuum measured in ball-on-disk experiments. The evaluated mechanical properties are hardness, elastic modulus and residual stresses. These stresses were determined by the substrate curvature method. The study reveals that the residual stress state in the films and the hardness-to-modulus ratio are crucial for their tribological performance in humid air and vacuum environments. After a detailed determination of the relationships between deposition conditions and film properties, some selected microstructural analyses are presented which show that a substantially basal orientation of the lattice has positive effects on wear but also causes anisotropic film properties which result in fissile fracture of the coating if strong shock or point loads occur.

FAU Authors / FAU Editors

Tremmel, Stephan Dr.-Ing.
Lehrstuhl für Konstruktionstechnik
Vierneusel, Bernd
Lehrstuhl für Konstruktionstechnik
Wartzack, Sandro Prof. Dr.-Ing.
Lehrstuhl für Konstruktionstechnik

External institutions with authors

Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM)

How to cite

Vierneusel, B., Schneider, T., Tremmel, S., Wartzack, S., & Gradt, T. (2013). Humidity resistant MoS2 coatings deposited by unbalanced magnetron sputtering. Surface & Coatings Technology, 235(11), 97–107.

Vierneusel, Bernd, et al. "Humidity resistant MoS2 coatings deposited by unbalanced magnetron sputtering." Surface & Coatings Technology 235.11 (2013): 97–107.


Last updated on 2018-10-07 at 02:23