Composite, diffusive titanium nitride layers formed on a titanium and aluminum sub-layer were produced on the AZ91D magnesium alloy. The layers were obtained using a hybrid method which combined the PVD processes with the final sealing by a hydrothermal treatment. The microstructure, resistance to corrosion, mechanical damage, and frictional wear of the layers were examined. The properties of the AZ91D alloy covered with these layers were compared with those of the untreated alloy and of some engineering materials such as 316L stainless steel, 100Cr6 bearing steel, and the AZ91D alloy subjected to commercial anodizing. It has been found that the composite diffusive nitride layer produced on the AZ91D alloy and then sealed by the hydrothermal treatment ensures the corrosion resistance comparable with that of 316L stainless steel. The layers are characterized by higher electrochemical durability which is due to the surface being overbuilt with the titanium oxides formed, as shown by the XPS examinations, from titanium nitride during the hydrothermal treatment. The composite titanium nitride layers exhibit high resistance to mechanical damage and wear, including frictional wear which is comparable with that of 100Cr6 bearing steel. The performance properties of the AZ91D magnesium alloy covered with the composite titanium nitride coating are substantially superior to those of the alloy subjected to commercial anodizing which is the dominant technique employed in industrial practice.
Tacikowski, M., Betiuk, M., Cymerman, K., Pisarek, M., Pokorska, I., & Wierzchoń, T. (2014). High performance corrosion and wear resistant composite titanium nitride layers produced on the AZ91D magnesium alloy by a hybrid method. Journal of Magnesium and Alloys, 2(3), 265–273. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jma.2014.09.006