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Local properties of nanocomposite coatings obtained in a plasma process coupled with aerosols




Duration: NanoX master Internship (8 months part-time in-lab immersion)
5 months full-time internship
6 months full-time internship

Latest starting date: 01/10/2022

Localisation: Laplace, Université Paul Sabatier
bâtiment 3R3

Christina Villeneuve, Dr
Richard Clergereaux, Dr

This research master's degree project could be followed by a PhD

Work package:
1. Context Nanomaterials and nano-based or nanocomposite thin films are developing specific properties related to the size, form, dispersion and composition of the different components. The controlled preparation of such coatings can be difficile and potential risky, notably due to the possible toxicity of nano-objects. Plasma processes coupled with the injection of aerosols are under development. They are offering new strategies and opportunities to develop multifunctional coatings. For example, Laplace and LCC patented a safe-by-design method of direct liquid reactor-injector of nanoparticles [Kahn, M. L.; Champouret, Y.; Clergereaux, R.; Vahlas, C.; Mingotaud, A.-F. Process for the Preparation of Nanoparticles. EP 16305977.7, 2016]. It allows to form nanocomposites thin films with limited risks for human and the environment and in agreement with some of the principal of green chemistry. For example, the coatings based on zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles embedded in a diamond like carbon (DLC) matrix are developing multifunctionalities (hydrophobicity, low water adhesion) of high impact (coatings for self-cleaning, anti-icing, etc.) in a sustainable way (resources, durability). These materials are currently studied for their macroscopic properties. Nevertheless, to develop and strengthen their application potential, it is necessary to characterize finely the composition, topology and local properties of the coatings. Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) enables to study the topology, the mechanical properties as the adhesion, deformation and Young modulus (Peak-Force Quantitative NanoMechanical - PFQNM) and the electrical properties as the dielectric properties (Electrostatic Force Microscopy- EFM). 2. Intern objectives In this context, intern will characterize by AFM nanocomposites thin films based on ZnO nanoparticles in DLC matrix with different compositions and different thicknesses. These materials will be deposited in a low temperature plasma coupled with an aerosol of the matrix precursor (pentane) with nanoparticles with different process conditions. Characterizing such materials at local scale is a real challenge because of the small dimension of the nanoparticles (less than 10 nm). Methods derived from AFM are promising to locally characterize local functional properties (mechanical, electrical, thermal…) but it is still challenging at the few nm range. Internship will be divided into different part. First, the intern will be formed on the set-up for AFM (topography) and PF-QNM (mechanical properties) measurements. Then, he will study the effects of the film thickness and composition on the topography/morphology and the mechanical properties in AFM/PF-QNM. Finally, it aims to discuss the impact of local properties to the macroscopic ones. 3. Required skills This internship aims to give young professionals valuable working experience in the research lab in the context of a multidisciplinary project. Intern with acquire an experience in material characterization by AFM. The candidate may be curious, self-motivated and open minded.

L. Cacot, G. Carnide, M. L. Kahn, R. Clergereaux, N. Naudé and L. Stafford, Kinetics driving thin-film deposition in plane-to-plane dielectric barrier discharge using a direct liquid injector operated in a pulsed regime, accepted for publication in Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, JPhysD-131902.R1, September 2022 M.L. Kahn, Y. Champouret, R. Clergereaux, C. Vahlas, A.F. Mingotaud, Process for the preparation of nanoparticles, patent EP16305977.7, WO/2018/019862 R. Magnan, R. Clergereaux, C. Villeneuve-Faure, B. Lantin, G. Carnide, P. Raynaud, N. Naudé, Aerosol assisted atmospheric pressure plasma jet for a high deposition rate of silica-like thin films. The European Physical Journal Applied Physics, 97, 37 (2022) C. Villeneuve-Faure, K. Makasheva, L. Boudou, G. Teyssedre, Space Charge at Nanoscale: Probing Injection and Dynamic Phenomena Under Dark/Light Configurations by Using KPFM and C-AFM. In Electrical Atomic Force Microscopy for Nanoelectronics (pp. 267-301). Springer, Cham (2019).

Areas of expertise:
material science, AFM

Required skills for the internship:
curiosity, self-motivation, open mind For M2 student, requires ZRR autorisation (delay 2-3 months)