A process for producing an article with improved ceramic surface properties including providing an article having a ceramic surface, and placing the article onto a conductive substrate holder in a hermetic enclosure. Thereafter a low pressure ambient is provided in the hermetic enclosure. A plasma including ions of solid materials is produced the ceramic surface of the article being at least partially immersed in a macroparticle free region of the plasma. While the article is immersed in the macroparticle free region, a bias of the substrate holder is biased between a low voltage at which material from the plasma condenses on the surface of the article and a high negative voltage at which ions from the plasma are implanted into the article.
This invention was made with government support under Grant Nos. MSS-8996309 and DE-AC03-76SF-00098 awarded by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in this invention.