presented by the Rocky Mountain AVS

Overview of Vacuum Technology

Neil Peacock Board of Directors of the AVS Vacuum Technology Division, chair of the AVS Recommended Practices Sub-Committee on Ionization Gauges. Tim Gessert Senior Scientist, EPIR Inc. in Bolingbrook, IL. Wednesday September 21 and Thursday September 22, 2016

Course Objectives

  • Be introduced to the fundamental concepts of vacuum technology.
  • Learn about common vacuum system hardware and instrumentation, including pumps, gauges, flanges, valves, and feedthroughs.
  • Understand applications and processes involving vacuum technology.
  • Benefit from a “just right” two-day course (when you don’t have the time or the need to attend a four- or five-day introductory course).

Course Description

The course begins with a definition of vacuum and a description of the physical conditions existing in a vacuum environment. Following this introduction will be a discussion of gases at low pressures and the interactions between gases and solids. The phenomena of gas flow though vacuum systems will then be examined. The primary components of vacuum systems, with an emphasis on pumps and gauges, will be described.

Requirements for materials compatible with the vacuum environment will be discussed. Various sealing techniques will be described, including coverage of all demountable flange systems in common use today. Common vacuum system configurations and operational procedures will be outlined. The course will finish with a description of vacuum leak detection methods and the far-reaching applications of vacuum technology today.

Ample time for questions and discussion will be scheduled. A comprehensive list of references will be provided for those wishing to learn more detailed information about specific areas. The emphasis of the course will be to provide practical information for individuals with minimal training in vacuum technology.

Who Should Attend?

Managers, technicians, engineers, and scientists who desire an introduction to the concepts, hardware, and instrumentation used in applied vacuum technology today. Those interested in a short review of vacuum basics will also find this course valuable.

Thin Film Nucleation and Growth

Joe Greene Professor of Materials Science and Head of Electronics Materials Division, University of Illinois.  September 21, 2016

Course Objectives

  • Understand the primary experimental variables and surface reaction paths controlling nucleation/growth kinetics and microstructural evolution during vapor-phase deposition.
  • Develop an appreciation of the advantages/disadvantages of competing growth techniques.
  • Learn how to better design film growth processes.

Course description

Thin-film technology is pervasive in many applications, including microelectronics, optics, magnetics, hard and corrosion resistant coatings, micromechanics, etc. Progress in each of these areas depends upon the ability to selectively and controllably deposit thin films (thickness ranging from tens of angstroms to micrometers) with specified physical properties. This, in turn, requires control — often at the atomic level — of film microstructure and microchemistry.

Essential fundamental aspects, as well as the technology, of thin-film nucleation and growth from the vapor phase (evaporation, MBE, sputtering, and CVD) are discussed in detail and highlighted with “real” examples. The course begins with an introduction on substrate surfaces: structure, reconstruction, and adsorption/desorption kinetics. Nucleation processes are treated in detail using insights obtained from both in situ (RHEED, LEED, STM, AES, EELS, etc.) and post-deposition (TEM and AFM) analyses. The primary modes of nucleation include 2D (step flow, layer-by-layer, and 2D multilayer), 3D, and Stranski-Krastanov. The fundamental limits of epitaxy will be discussed.

Experimental results and simulations will be used to illustrate processes controlling 3D nucleation kinetics, island coalescence, clustering, secondary nucleation, column formation, preferred orientation, and microstructure evolution. The effects of low-energy ion-irradiation during deposition, as used in sputtering and plasma-CVD, will be discussed with examples.

Who should attend?

  • Scientists and engineers involved in deposition characterization or manufacturing/marketing of deposition equipment.
  • Those who conduct surface analysis characterizations or specify measurements to be performed.

Sputter Deposition

Joe Greene, Professor of Materials Science and Head of Electronics Materials Division, University of Illinois, Thursday September 22,  2016

 Course Objectives

  • Understand target effects and sputtered atoms.
  • Learn about magnetron, diode, triode, and ion beam systems.
  • Learn about DC and RF systems for targets and substrates.
  • Understand reactive sputtering.
  • Understand film properties and learn system parameters.

Course Description

Films are deposited by sputtering for their useful properties in microelectronics, surface protection, optics, etc., by a variety of sputtering techniques. The film properties depend on the parameters of the sputtering system, such as pressure and substrate bias.

This course provides an understanding of the cause and effect of changes in sputtering parameters on the energetics of the sputtering and deposition processes and their relationship to film properties. The energy and distribution of species ejected from the target are discussed. The effect of the sputtering system on material transport to the substrate and subsequent film deposition is also discussed for films of metals, alloys, and compounds. The parameters of different sputtering systems (diode, triode, magnetron, and ion guns) with DC and RF power supplies are discussed with respect to film properties.

Who Should Attend?

Scientists, technicians, and others involved in the deposition of thin films by sputtering who want to understand the effects of operating parameters on the properties of metal, alloy, and dielectric films.



Atomic Layer Deposition

Steve George Dept. of Chemistry & Biochemistry and Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder.  September 23, 2016

 Course Objectives

  • Learn the fundamentals of ALD based on sequential self-limiting surface reactions.
  • Understand the important advantages of ALD and comparison with CVD.
  • Learn about ideal and non-ideal ALD and thermal and plasma-enhanced ALD.
  • Understand how ALD surface chemistry and growth are studied using in situ probes.
  • Learn how ALD can be utilized for thin film nanoengineering.
  • Understand the many current and potential applications of ALD.

Course Description

This course develops an understanding of atomic layer deposition (ALD). Al2O3 ALD is first introduced as an ideal model system and then ALD is compared with CVD. Non-ideal ALD behavior is presented before discussing plasma and radical-enhanced ALD. Subsequently, novel surface chemistry is described for metal ALD.
The course reviews the important topic of nucleation and growth during ALD before introducing low temperature ALD. ALD on polymers and ALD on particles are then discussed to illustrate some potential new application areas for ALD. ALD on porous substrates is reviewed to illustrate how ALD can deposit conformally on high aspect ratio structures. The ALD of nanolaminates and composites is then discussed to demonstrate the potential of ALD for thin film nanoengineering.

Who Should Attend?

Engineers and scientists who want an introduction to ALD or need to broaden or update their knowledge of this important field.


Controlling Contamination in Vacuum Systems

Tim Gessert Senior Scientist, EPIR Inc.  September 23, 2016

 Course Objectives

  • Understand the three phases of vacuum chamber contamination: gases, films, and particulates.
  • Learn the origins of vacuum chamber contaminants and methods for controlling or eliminating them.

Course Description

Various forms of contamination in a vacuum system affect the environment in which vacuum processes are conducted. Understanding and controlling these contaminants are important steps in producing the desired chamber conditions or products.

This course addresses three phases of in-chamber contamination: gases, films, and particulates. The origin of these contaminants and methods of eliminating them are discussed. The emphasis is on defining the level of control required and identifying the appropriate procedures necessary to establish that control. There will also be discussion on the environment that must be achieved in the chamber and how it is related to the vacuum system operating and maintenance procedures and the environment outside the chamber.

This course is presented in a semi-workshop, interactive format.

Who Should Attend?

Those responsible for the production of contaminant-free products and for the design, operation, and maintenance of vacuum systems producing these products. The course will also interest suppliers of components and products that either control or produce contamination in a vacuum environment.


Quick n’ Dirty Leak Detection

Neil Peacock Board of Directors of the AVS Vacuum Technology Division, chair of the AVS Recommended Practices Sub-Committee on Ionization Gauges.  September 23, 2016  (1/2 day)

Course Objectives

  • Compare real vs. virtual leaks.
  • Learn different leak detection methods.
  • Learn leak rate specifications.
  • Learn how a mass spectrometer leak detector works.
  • Learn about the care and feeding of a mass spectrometer leak detector.
  • Learn basic ways to use a mass spectrometer leak detector.
  • Know what to do when a leak is found.
  • Know what to do when a leak is NOT found

Course Description

In addition, we have tentatively arranged to have an operating leak detector available during the course. If this is successful, there will be demonstrations and student “hands-on” time too.

Who Should Attend?

This course is for anyone wanting more familiarity about leak detection, with an emphasis on using helium mass spectrometer leak detector, including technicians, engineers specifying leak rates, managers or anyone interested in leak detection. This will be a basic introduction from a user’s point of view, without large amounts of math or theory. Minimal time will be spent on vacuum system troubleshooting or maintenance.