Films of amorphic diamond can be deposited from laser plasma ions without the use of catalysts such as hydrogen or fluorine. Prepared without columnar patterns of growth, the layers of this material have been reported to have ‘‘bulk’’ values of mechanical properties that have suggested their usage as protective coatings for metals. Described here is a study of the bonding and properties realized in one such example, the deposition of amorphic diamond on titanium. Measurements with Rutherford backscattering spectrometry and transmission electron microscopy showed that the diamond coatings deposited from laser plasmas were chemically bonded to Ti substrates in 100–200‐Å‐thick interfacial layers containing some crystalline precipitates of TiC. Resistance to wear was estimated with a modified sand blaster and in all cases the coating was worn away without any rupture or deterioration of the bonding layer. Such wear was greatly reduced and lifetimes of the coated samples were increased by a factor of better than 300 with only 2.7 μm of amorphic diamond.

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