Reactive deposition of metal thin films within porous supports from supercritical fluids

N. E. Fernandes, S. M. Fisher, J. C. Poshusta, D. G. Vlachos, M. Tsapatsis, J. J. Watkins

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Continuous palladium films were synthesized at controlled depths within porous alumina disks by H2 reduction of organopalladium compounds dissolved in supercritical CO2 at 60 °C using an opposing reactants deposition geometry. Film position was controlled by adjusting the relative concentrations of H2 and the palladium precursor (π-2-methylallyl(cyclopentadienyl) palladium (II) or palladium(II) hexafluoroacetylacetonate) on opposite sides of the alumina substrate. Because of a disparity in the diffusivity of the metal precursor and H2 in the support, a temporary barrier of poly-4-methyl-1-pentene on the H2 side of the alumina substrate was used to reduce H2 flux in a controlled manner. Guided by a simple mass transport model, Pd films between 2 and 80 μm thick were deposited at prescribed depths between 80 and 600 μm as measured from the precursor side. Electron probe microanalysis indicated complete pore filling of the porous alumina at the reaction zone and X-ray diffraction revealed that the structure of the deposit is nanocrystalline. The flux of N2 through the alumina disk was reduced by over 4 orders of magnitude after deposition and annealing at 500 °C.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2023-2031
Number of pages9
JournalChemistry of Materials
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2001


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