Diamond nucleation studies on refractory metals and nickel
Diamond nucleation has been investigated on a variety of potential heteroepitaxial substrate materials. Previous work in this laboratory has demonstrated heteroepitaxial nucleation on both Si and SiC substrates via bias-enhanced nucleation (BEN). In this study the effects of BEN of diamond on refractory metal substrates is investigated in detail. Initial data suggest a strong correlation between the carbide forming nature of the substrate material and the rate of nucleation during biasing. Our second avenue of research involves low pressure diamond growth on nickel. This material is a promising material due to its close lattice match and recent evidence of epitaxy reported by other researchers. To form heteroepitaxial diamond on nickel a high temperature pretreatment routine has been established and is the basis for this area of research. The relative importance of hydrogen absorption during this routine is explored and correlated to the formation and degree of diamond epitaxy.