Titanium films were mixed, using excimer laser radiation, into the surface of bulk Si3N4 materials. The tribological and mechanical properties of these surfaces were then evaluated using pin-on-disk and nanoindenter techniques, respectively. Reduced friction and a change in the wear mechanism that resulted in a more benign failure mode were observed. These results are interpreted as resulting from the establishment of a transfer film, changes in the compliance of the surface which reduces instantaneous stresses in the surface, and toughening of the surface, all results of the laser process.
Jervis, T., Hirvonen, J-P., Nastasi, M., & Kung, H. (1995). Tribology and mechanical properties of excimer laser processed Ti-silicon nitride surfaces. Journal of Materials Research, 10(8), 1857-1860. https://doi.org/10.1557/JMR.1995.1857