What would be the best choice of parameters in general if one would like to get pure island growth (i.e. Volmer-Weber growth) in a sputtering deposition process and what would be a good estimate of the maximum height of these islands (e.g. 10 nm) before they will form a continuous film?
By parameters I mean the temperature of the substrate, the argon ion pressure and the applied voltage. If you can think of anything else that could be changed, please add.
Also, how do these parameters depend on the material? I can't find good references for different materials online, just a few special cases such as silver or gold islands on a sapphire substrate. Can one make a general statement about different lattices and defects in a substrate, e.g. a cleaved surface that basically provides no nucleation sites except step edges, which unfortunately won't lead to islands but to "lines" along these edges.
A sketch of the sputtering process :