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Tutorial Course Descriptions

Detailed Syllabus

C-208A Sputter Deposition for Aerospace Applications

This course covers topics of practical importance to those using sputtering to deposit coatings for aerospace applications. It is intended for engineers, scientists and technicians who would like an understanding of the factors that influence product throughput, coating quality, and process robustness and reliability. It begins with a basic description of sputtering and sputtering plasmas and then illustrates the use of various techniques through specific applications. These include coatings for reducing friction and wear, optical coatings for filters and displays, coatings for sensors, and others. The relationships between the sputtering conditions and important film properties - such as microstructure, composition, stress, adhesion and the resulting mechanical, electrical, and optical characteristics - are discussed. The emphasis is on process and hardware considerations rather than the detailed material properties of the coatings.

 

Topical Outline:
  • A Brief introduction to basic vacuum technology
  • Sputtering plasmas and the nature of the sputtering process
  • Estimating deposition rates and rate limiting factors
  • Cathode geometries and associated film thickness profiles
  • Film composition and compositional uniformity
  • Film nucleation and growth
  • Effects of substrate temperature and energetic particle bombardment
  • Biased sputtering and the use of unbalanced magnetrons
  • Sources of substrate heating
  • rf sputtering of dielectrics from insulating targets
  • The dc, pulsed dc, and ac reactive sputtering of dielectrics
  • Process control methods for reactive sputtering
  • Arcing, disappearing anodes, and other process stability issues
  • Ion beam sputtering
  • High Power Pulsed Magnetron Sputtering (HPPMS or HIPIMS)
Course Details:

This course covers topics of practical importance to those using sputtering to deposit coatings for aerospace applications. It is intended for engineers, scientists and technicians who would like an understanding of the factors that influence product throughput, coating quality, and process robustness and reliability. It begins with a basic description of sputtering and sputtering plasmas and then illustrates the use of various techniques through specific applications. These include coatings for reducing friction and wear, optical coatings for filters and displays, coatings for sensors, and others. The relationships between the sputtering conditions and important film properties - such as microstructure, composition, stress, adhesion and the resulting mechanical, electrical, and optical characteristics - are discussed. The emphasis is on process and hardware considerations rather than the detailed material properties of the coatings. A number of relevant sputtering methods are covered as described in the course outline below.

  • Sputtering plasmas and the nature of the sputtering process
    • The Paschen curve
    • Diode sputtering
    • Magnetron sputtering
    • Energy and distribution of sputtered material
    • Cathode geometries and associated film thickness profiles
    • Nucleation and growth
    • Structure zone diagrams
  • Coatings for reducing friction and wear
    • Unbalanced magnetron sputtering
    • Bias sputtering
    • Reactive sputtering of nitrides and carbides
    • Nanocomposite and multilayer coatings
    • HIPIMS
  • Optical coatings
    • RF sputtering
    • Reactive sputtering of dielectrics
      • Process control
      • dc, pulsed dc and ac reactive sputtering
    • Ion beam sputtering
  • Coatings for sensor applications
    • Alloy coatings
    • Fiber coatings
    • Sources of substrate heating

Instructor: David A. Glocker, Isoflux (retired)
David A. Glocker

founded Isoflux Incorporated, a manufacturer of magnetron equipment, in 1993. He has more than 30 years’ experience in thin film research, development, and manufacturing and has taken a number of new processes from laboratory-scale feasibility studies through successful production. He is an inventor or co-inventor of 31 U.S. patents and an author of more than 30 research papers in the areas of sputter source design, plasmas and plasma characteristics, sources of substrate heating in sputtering, and the control of sputtering processes and sputtered film properties. He also is the co-editor of The Handbook of Thin Film Process Technology, a major reference work in the field.


This course is currently available via:
On Location Education Program

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