Leveling and dewetting processes of nanoindentation-induced defects on thin polymer films

Ioannis Karapanagiotis, D. Fennell Evans, William W Gerberich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

We study the effect of nanoindentation-induced indents on polystyrene (PS) films (thickness = h > 100 nm), spin-cast on silicon substrates. Indents with residual depths of penetration, zD, comparable to the film thicknesses leveled (healed) upon heating above the glass transition temperature (Tg) of bulk PS, resulting in a flat polymer surface. Deep indents which clearly penetrated the films and damaged the substrate dewetted from the silicon surface. The healing rate, dzD/dt, was measured for several molecular weight PS films and found to scale with the curvature of the hole bottom, HD, as (dzD/dt) HD0.52±0.05. Measurements were performed using atomic force microscopy. The healing rate was found to be, in general, higher than the dewetting rate of the laterally expanded deep indents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3741-3747
Number of pages7
JournalMacromolecules
Volume34
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - May 22 2001

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