Field emission properties and surface structure of nickel containing amorphous carbon

G. Y. Chen, J. S. Chen, Z. Sun, Y. J. Li, Shu Ping Lau, B. K. Tay, J. W. Chai

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Nickel containing amorphous carbon (a-C:Ni) films have been deposited by filtered cathodic vacuum arc (FCVA) technique by introducing pure nickel into the graphite target. The field electron emission property of a-C:Ni was improved when compared to that of pure tetrahedral amorphous carbon (ta-C) by FCVA. The emission threshold field of a-C:Ni film is about 5 V μm-1, whilst the threshold field of the ta-C film is about 13 V μm-1. Raman spectroscopy suggests that the sp2clusters in the carbon film increase both in size and number when Ni is introduced. However, the emission was found to degrade to threshold fields beyond 20 V μm-1after the a-C:Ni film was left in ambient for a week. This observation is attributed to surface absorption of oxygen on the a-C:Ni film, as determined by X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-190
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Surface Science
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 16 Aug 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Amorphous carbon (ta-C)
  • Indium-tin-oxide (ITO)
  • Tetrahedral amorphous carbon (ta-C)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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