Surface temperature: A key parameter to control the propanethiol plasma polymer chemistry

Damien Thiry, Fransisco Aparicio, Priya Laha, Herman Terryn, Rony Snyders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


In this work, the influence of the substrate temperature (Ts) on the chemical composition of propanethiol plasma polymers was investigated for a given set of plasma conditions. In a first study, a decrease in the atomic sulfur content (at. %S) with the deposition time (td) was observed. This behavior is explained by the heating of the growing film during deposition process, limiting the incorporation of stable sulfur-based molecules produced in the plasma. Experiments carried out by controlling the substrate temperature support this hypothesis. On the other hand, an empirical law relating the Ts and the at. %S was established. This allows for the formation of gradient layer presenting a heterogeneous chemical composition along the thickness, as determined by depth profile analysis combining X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and C60 ion gun sputtering. The experimental data fit with the one predicted from our empiric description. The whole set of our results provide new insights in the relationship between the substrate temperature and the sulfur content in sulfur-based plasma polymers, essential for future developments.
Original languageEnglish
Article number050602
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Vacuum Science & Technology A
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • plasma
  • surface temperature


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