Exploiting physical vapor deposition for morphological control in semi-crystalline polymer films

Yucheng Wang, Hyuncheol Jeong, Mithun Chowdhury, Craig B. Arnold, Rodney D. Priestley

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Research in semi-crystalline polymer thin films has seen significant growth due to their fascinating thermal, mechanical, and electronic properties. In all applications, acquiring precise control over the film morphology atop various substrates or in the free-standing film geometry is key to advancing product performance. This article reviews the crystallization of polymer thin films processed via physical vapor deposition (PVD). Classical PVD techniques are briefly reviewed, highlighting their working principles as well as successes and challenges to achieving morphological control of polymer films. Subsequently, the recent development of a unique PVD technique termed Matrix Assisted Pulsed Laser Evaporation (MAPLE) is highlighted. The non-destructive technology overcomes the major drawback of polymer degradation by classical PVD. Recent advances highlighting how MAPLE can be exploited to control polymer film morphology in ways not achievable by other methods are presented. Challenges and future scope of PVD for polymer film deposition concludes the review.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere10021
JournalPolymer Crystallization
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Materials Science (miscellaneous)


  • confinement
  • interfacial interactions
  • matrix assisted pulsed laser evaporation (MAPLE)
  • physical vapor deposition (PVD)
  • polymer crystallization
  • thin films


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