Tribology Letters

, Volume 30, Issue 1, pp 53–60 | Cite as

Tribological Properties of TiN/Ag Nanocomposite Coatings

  • Harald KöstenbauerEmail author
  • Gerardo A. Fontalvo
  • Christian Mitterer
  • Jozef Keckes
Original Paper


Morphology, structure, and tribological behavior of magnetron co-sputtered TiN/Ag nanocomposite coatings deposited at 150 °C with an Ag content in the range of 7–45 at.% were characterized. The coatings show a columnar structure with embedded Ag crystallites of 3–50 nm in diameter, where the columns are characterized by a layered structure with Ag-poor and Ag-rich layers. These layers originate from sample rotation during deposition, where the layer thickness increases with increasing Ag content. These Ag layers become continuous over a critical Ag content. At room temperature the friction coefficient is determined by the film structure, whereas friction and wear at high temperature depend on segregation of Ag to the surface.


Nitrides Silver Self lubricating composites Wear-resistant coatings 



This work was financially supported by the Austrian NANO Initiative via a grant from the Austrian Science Fund FWF (project N401-NAN). The authors would like to thank Prof. C. Teichert, Dr. G. Hlawacek, and T. Klünsner for their support with AFM measurements.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Harald Köstenbauer
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Gerardo A. Fontalvo
    • 1
  • Christian Mitterer
    • 1
  • Jozef Keckes
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Physical Metallurgy and Materials TestingUniversity of LeobenLeobenAustria
  2. 2.Department of Materials PhysicsUniversity of LeobenLeobenAustria

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