Materials and manufacturing processes vol:10 issue:4 pages:707-716
There has recently been a growing trend towards controlling the microstructure of materials at the nanometer level. Such ultrafine microstructure can provide unusual and interesting properties not attainable in conventional materials. This work describes an automated setup for the electrochemical deposition of laminated composites consisting of alternate layers of two different materials with individual laminate thickness in the range of nanometers. The setup uses two impinging electrolyte jets for deposition. In order to limit the mutual contamination of the baths, a novel gas curtain system has been employed. Characterization by Auger electron spectroscopy depth profiling and scanning electron microscopy has shown that the process can produce laminated nanocomposites with uniform structure and thickness. Under the proper deposition conditions no structural defects like islands or delamination could be found. The study thus demonstrates the capability of the relatively inexpensive electrochemical deposition process for the production of advanced materials with ultrafine microstructure.