Influence of layer type and order on barrier properties of multilayer PECVD barrier coatings

K Bahroun, H Behm, Felix Mitschker, Peter Awakowicz, R Dahlmann, C Hopmann

JOURNAL OF PHYSICS D-APPLIED PHYSICS, Volume: 47, Issue: 1, Article Number: 015201, DOI: 10.1088/0022-3727/47/1/015201, Published: JAN 8 2014


Due to their macromolecular structure, plastics are limited in their scope of application whenever high barrier functionality against oxygen and water vapour permeation is required. One solution is the deposition of thin silicon oxide coatings in plasma-enhanced chemical vapour deposition (PECVD) processes. A way to improve performance of barrier coatings is the use of multilayer structures built from dyad layers, which combine an inorganic barrier layer and an organic intermediate layer. In order to investigate the influence of type and number of dyads on the barrier performance of coated 23 mu m PET films, different dyad setups are chosen. The setups include SiOCH interlayers and SiOx-barrier layers deposited using the precursor hexamethyldisiloxane (HMDSO). A single reactor setup driven in pulsed microwave plasma (MW) mode as well as capacitively coupled plasma (CCP) mode is chosen. In this paper the effects of a variation in intermediate layer recipe and stacking order using dyad setups on the oxygen barrier properties of multilayer coatings are discussed with regard to the chemical structure, morphology and activation energy of the permeation process.

Changes in surface nano-morphology of intermediate layers have a strong impact on the barrier properties of subsequent glass-like coatings. Even a complete failure of the barrier is observed. Therefore, when depositing multilayer barrier coatings, stacking order has to be considered.

tags: plasma