Results of the study of structural features and optical properties of thin films of amorphous hydrogenated carbon (a-C:H) films prepared by plasma-activated chemical vapor deposition of various hydrocarbon precursors are reviewed. The effect of different factors on the rate of a-C:H films deposition in a DC glow discharge with the magnetron plasma localized near the anode such as voltage, discharge power, gas pressure, relative content of an inert gas in the mixture with a hydrocarbon and other is analyzed. It is shown that the refractive index of a-C:H films can be changed in the interval 2.35–1.55 by increasing the deposition rate and the choice of the appropriate hydrocarbon precursor. The features of the vibration spectra of the diamond-like and polymer-like films are discussed. The correlations of the structural peculiarities and of the optical absorption edge, gap width, and conductivity as well as the absorption spectra in visible region and the ratio of the fundamental bands in Raman scattering spectra are estimated. Examples of using the optical properties of the a-C:H films are given.
Part of the book: Crystalline and Non-crystalline Solids