The Chemistry of Metal/Polymer Interface Formation: Relevance to Adhesion
X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) has been used to characterize the interface formation stage of silver film growth on polymer surfaces. The interface formation process was systematically characterized by spectroscopic measurements of polymer-surface modifications and silver depositions performed in situ. Silver was deposited on unmodified and plasma-modified polymer surfaces in the subatomiclayer regime in order to study the influence of surface chemistry on the nucleation and growth of silver clusters. Spectroscopic characterization of silver/polymer chemical bonding was used to identify and quantify the nucleation sites inherent to a polymer surface and as a function of surface treatment. Silver cluster size and growth rates have been determined by spectroscopically monitoring the change In the electronic structure of silver as It aggregates from single atoms to metallic states. Nucleation/growth curves illustrate how surface chemistry influences the competition between nucleation and growth of silver clusters. Aided by molecular mechanics calculations, these curves Indicate that cluster growth can, for some systems, be separated into distinct phases of atom-by-atom and cluster-coalescence growth.
KeywordsPlasma Treatment Nucleation Site Adhesion Strength Polymer Surface Silver Cluster
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