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Soutenance publique de thèse de doctorat en Sciences physiques - Valentin GOFFINET

Ion implantation in Low-E coatings

Catégorie : défense de thèse
Date : 04/06/2024 16:00 - 04/06/2024 19:00
Lieu : PA02
Orateur(s) : Valentin Goffinet
Organisateur(s) : Stéphane Lucas


  • Prof. Julien COLAUX (UNamur), président
  • Prof. Stéphane LUCAS (UNamur), promoteur et secrétaire
  • Dr Amory JACQUES (Service Public de Wallonie)
  • Dr Philippe ROQUINY (AGC Glass Europe)
  • Prof. Rony SNYDERS (Université de Mons)


Low-emissivity (Low-E) coating technology revolutionizes glass applications for windows, offering high optical transparency while reducing heat transfer. They consist of a silver-based thin film deposed on a glass panel by physical vapor deposition. However, these coatings are fragile and must be placed inside a double-glazing cavity where an inert gas resides. Otherwise, they can be easily degraded by bad atmospheric conditions.

The thesis approach is to combine low-E technology with a post-treatment of ion implantation. The research question driving this thesis is: how does ion implantation enhance the durability of low-E coatings containing silver?

The experiments conducted during the thesis show that implantation indeed increases the coating resistance while having a small impact on its color. However, the treatment degrades the thermal insulation properties. Hence, a series of hypotheses are formulated based on the literature to explain and control this behavior.

A deeper investigation shows that implantation impacts the silver nanostructure. First by dewetting the film which allows reorganization into larger crystallites, second by forcing silver mixing at its interface through ballistic ejections. These two phenomena increase the toughness of the silver interface by interlocking effects. However, dewetting has also been linked to thermal insulation properties degradation. Nonetheless, it was shown that using light gas implantation limits the destructive effect (dewetting) while still inducing good durability (due to interface mixing).


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