Ion Times

December 2019 newsletter

Apps Lab

This past month we have provided sample coatings as well as demonstration of our equipment for customers with very specific needs. Our material library includes Ta2O5, TiO2 and SiO2 targets. We currently have a planetary fixture and will be adding a single axis rotation fixture this next month. Single layers or multilayer coatings – just let us know what idea you would like to test!

Manual Revisions

Just a quick reminder that we have recently posted manual revisions for the RF source and IBEAM RF power supply product lines. If you are thinking of purchasing or have already purchased an ion beam source or power supply, both manuals provide insight and examples. The troubleshooting section is more comprehensive and we have included an advanced operation section in the source manual. Please contact us if you still require assistance with your hardware.

We hope to have the revised edition of the RFN manual completed this month. Stay tuned.

Preview for next month

Still working on adding new features to the beam calculator on our web site. This handy tool provides a quick estimate of current density for different source sizes and beam conditions. This next month we are going to add an accelerator voltage tab so that more and different conditions can be examined.

Quick Tech Tip

The RF neutralizer is a very reliable electron source when properly maintained. The easiest safeguard to keep the RFN running for over 2500 hours is to flow Argon through the RFN when your system is vented. Keeping oxidation and water contamination from getting to the RFN collector will ensure that it will reliably start and operate with nominal performance. After the process is complete, let the RFN cool with its gas still flowing for 30 minutes before venting. Keep the gas flowing during the vent process and even when the vacuum chamber is at atmosphere. Shut the gas off during system pump down. Use this procedure regularly and the RFN will last a long time.

From Brett’s Desk

Ion beam applications are diverse and can be very demanding. Our goal is to help you with your source and process. We are working on some new and exciting ion source and system products for 2020. Some are designs being refined in CAD and others are being tested in the lab. Let us know how we might be able to help you this next year.

Happy Holidays!



Product of the Month:  6 cm RF source – assist beam with small footprint.

Our smallest ion beam source, the 6cm RF can provide all the benefits of radio frequency ion source technology in a smaller, more compact, and less expensive form. With a maximum beam current of 200mA at 1500V, the 6cm source is ideal for research and smaller production systems.

This source also finds a home in etch and ion beam figuring (IBF) systems with its highly divergent or highly convergent grid options. The body of this source is not water-cooled, thus requiring only two feedthroughs, RF power and DC Bias/Gas. Designed around the flexibility of internal mounting, the 6cm source is also capable of being mounted directly to a flange for process flexibility. As with all RF sources, the 6cm source can be run with both inert and reactive gases, making the 6cm ideal for any ion beam process.


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