Nucleation of cubic boron nitride thin films

C. Collazo-Davila, E. Bengu*, L. D. Marks, M. Kirk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


High-energy electrons (300keV to 1MeV) in a transmission electron microscope have been used to cause ballistic atomic displacements in hexagonal boron nitride. The high-resolution imaging capabilities of the TEM have allowed us to study the effect of the atomic displacements on the crystal structure of the BN. We report the formation of nanoarches - fullerene structures consisting of half of a BN nanotube capping the ends of the planar BN graphitic sheets. To form a basis of comparison between the high-energy electron bombardment and the ion bombardment typically used for cubic BN film growth, TRIM calculations were also performed to simulate Ar+ ion bombardment of hexagonal BN. A model is presented, indicating a process through which the nanoarches can serve as nucleation sites for the cubic phase of BN. The nucleation model is consistent with current experimental reports on the formation of cubic BN thin films.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1091-1100
Number of pages10
JournalDiamond and Related Materials
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 6 1999


  • Cubic boron nitride
  • Electron bombardment
  • Ion bombardment
  • Nucleation
  • TEM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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