A study on a model system for polymer–metal interface formation after surface treatment is presented. We discuss a comparative x‐ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis of insitu plasma and ion‐treated polypropylene surfaces with an evaporated magnesium overlayer. The different surface treatments are found to enhance the sticking probability of the metal vapor on the polymer surface considerably. Depending on the kind of surface treatment, different types of bonding of the Mg with the polymer are observed. The analysis of the excited plasmons is used to gain information about the interface formation. The experimental results suggest an island growth mode of the Mg.

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