Oxidation Kinetics of Silicon Carbide Crystals and Ceramics: I, In Dry Oxygen

Authors

  • JOHN A. COSTELLO,

    1. Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania 16802
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    • Member, the American Ceramic Society.

    • Now at the U.S. Army Electronics Technology and Devices. Laboratory, Fort Monmouth. NJ 07703

  • RICHARD E. TRESSLER

    1. Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania 16802
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    • Member, the American Ceramic Society.


  • Presented at the 35th Annual Meeting of the American Ceramic Society, Chicago, IL, April 27, 1983 (Basic Science Division, Paper No. 189–B–83).

  • Supported by the U.S. Army Research Office Division of Metallurgy and Material Science.

Abstract

The oxidation kinetics of several single-crystal and polvcrystalline silicon carbide materials and single-crystal silicon in dry oxygen over the temperature range 1200° to 1500°C were fitted to the linear-parabolic model of Deal and Grove. The lower oxidation rates of silicon carbide compared to silicon can be rationalized by additional consumption of oxidant in oxidizing carbon to carbon dioxide. The (000J) Si face of the silicon carbide platelets exhibited lower parabolic oxidation rates than the (0001) C face, by a factor of 10 at 1200°C. Apparent activation energies increased from a value of ∼120 kJ/mol below 1400°C to a value of ∼300 kJ/mol above this temperature. The (0001) Si face exhibited this high activation energy over the entire temperature range. The controlled nucleation thermally deposited material exhibited the highest oxidation rates of the polycrystalline materials followed by the hot-pressed and sintered α-silicon carbides. In general, the oxidation rates of the polycrystalline materials were bracketed by the oxidation rates of the basal planes of the single-crystal materials. Higher impurity concentrations and higher density of nucleation sites led to a greater susceptibility to crystallization of the scale which significantly complicated the oxidation behaviors observed. When crystallization of the oxide scale occurred in the form of a layer of spherulitic cristobalite crystals, a retardation of the oxidation rates was observed. An accelerated oxidation behavior was found when this coherent layer was superseded by the formation of fine mullite crystals.

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