SVConnections May 2016
August 2017


Low-Pressure Plasma Cleaning of Aerospace Components Using Breathing/Compressed Air

From NASA Tech Briefs, June 1, 2017, by John F. Kennedy Space Center, FL:
  "A method for precision cleaning of aerospace components is needed that does not use hazardous or environmentally harmful commodities.  Researchers at John F. Kennedy Space Center and Vencore Services and Solutions have developed a method using a low-pressure plasma cleaning system combined with breathing or compressed air as the feed gas. Plasma cleaning with air has the following advantages over other precision cleaning methods: produces essentially no hazardous waste stream, no drying time, renewable low-cost consumable (air), and simple operation. READ FULL ARTICLE.


Nanostructures Detect Colors

From California Institute of Technology, June 28, 2017:
  " Engineers at Caltech have for the first time developed a light detector that combines two disparate technologies -- nanophotonics, which manipulates light at the nanoscale, and thermoelectrics, which translates temperature differences directly into electron voltage -- to distinguish different wavelengths of light, including both visible and infrared wavelengths, at high resolution. The new detector operates about 10 to 100 times faster than current comparable thermoelectric devices and is capable of detecting light across a wider range of the electromagnetic spectrum than traditional light detectors. The detectors were fabricated in the Kavli Nanoscience Institute cleanroom at Caltech, where the team created subwavelength structures using a combination of vapor deposition and electron beam lithography. READ FULL ARTICLE.

New Theory Predicts Wetted Area of Droplets Colliding with Flat Surface

From Kumamoto University, Japan, May 24, 2017, Yukihiro Yonemoto:

"Japanese researchers have succeeded in deriving a theoretical formula that quantitatively predicts the wetting and spreading behavior of droplets that collide with the flat surface of a solid material. The wettability of droplets adhering to a solid surface is characterized by the tangential dynamic balance equation (Young equation) at the contact line. In previous theoretical studies on the maximum wetting and spreading area of collision droplets, only the balance equation of the contact line in the tangential direction was considered. The conventional method used for high speed collisions generates large errors at low speeds and the conventional method used for low speed collisions returns large errors at high speeds. To reduce calculation errors, a collaboration between Kumamoto University and Kyoto University researchers focused on what had yet to be studied in detail, the normal surface tension on the contact line and the energy balance of droplets colliding with solid surfaces." READ FULL ARTICLE.

Lab Breakthrough in 3D Printing of Glass

From Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, May 2, 2017 by Jeremy Thomas:
" Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists and academic collaborators have demonstrated the synthesis of transparent glass through 3D printing, a development that could ultimately lead to altering the design and structure of lasers and other devices that incorporate optics. A new 3D printing technique, developed at Lawrence Livermore, could allow scientists to print glass that incorporates different refractive indices in a single flat optic, making finishing cheaper and easier. LLNL chemical engineer and project lead Rebecca Dylla-Spears. 'We're not going to replace the optical materials made through traditional means, but we're trying to impart new functionality using additive manufacturing. This is the first step to being able to print compositionally graded glass optics.' "   READ FULL ARTICLE.

Automotive Touch Screen Shipments to Top 50 Million Units in 2017 

From  IHS Markit, May 30, 2017:
" Automotive touch panel shipments are expected to top 50 million units in 2017, up 11 percent from 45 million units in 2016, according to IHS Markit, a world leader in critical information, analytics and solutions. More importantly, capacitive-touch screen shipments are forecast to surpass that of traditionally-dominated resistive-touch screens in vehicles in 2017. Many newer automotive screen applications now require touch screen panels, which shifts the role of in-car displays from simply revealing information visually to becoming an actual human-machine interface. This shift, along with the increased volume of displayed data, is driving a growing need for easy-to-see designs of displays that incorporate larger sizes, non-rectangular or curved shapes, as well as higher resolutions."  READ FULL ARTICLE.
Source: IHS Markit
Image: Carl Lampert

$49.4 Billion Semiconductor Equipment Forecast - New Record

From SEMI, July 11, 2017:

" SEMI, the global industry association representing the electronics manufacturing supply chain, released its Mid-year Forecast at the annual SEMICON West exposition. SEMI reported that worldwide sales of new semiconductor manufacturing equipment are projected to increase 19.8 percent to total $49.4 billion in 2017, marking the first time that the semiconductor equipment market has exceeded the market high of $47.7 billion set in 2000. In 2018, 7.7 percent growth is expected, resulting in another record-breaking year ─ totaling $53.2 billion for the global semiconductor equipment market. In 2017, South Korea will be the largest equipment market for the first time. After maintaining the top spot for five years, Taiwan will place second, while China will come in third." READ FULL ARTICLE.

Source: SEMI
Image: SEMI

Move Over Tesla, Europe's Building Its Own Battery Gigafactories

From Bloomberg, May 21, 2017, by Anna Hirtenstein:

"Battery-making gigafactories are about to arrive in Europe, challenging a lead Tesla Inc. is building at a plant in Nevada and opening the way for a quicker shift toward green power for both cars and utilities. German Chancellor Angela Merkel broke ground at a 500 million-euro ($543 million) plant to assemble lithium-ion energy-storage units for Daimler AG, which produces Mercedes-Benz and Maybach luxury cars. The facility 130 kilometers (81 miles) south of Berlin highlights a push by both major automakers and power companies into energy storage. Global battery-making capacity is set to more than double by 2021, reaching 278 gigawatt-hours, up from about 103 gigawatt-hours now, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF). Europe's market share is expected to almost double over that time." READ FULL ARTICLE.

S ource: Bloomberg News
Image:  Bloomberg News  

Solving Complex Adhesion Problems with Plasma

From Product Design & Development, June 2, 2017 by Jeff Elliott (for PVA TePla America):

" Whether bonding metal to plastic, silicon to glass, polymers to other polymers of different durometers, biological content to polymeric microtiter plates or even bonding to polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), plasma can be used to promote adhesion. Adhesion promotion can be achieved by increasing the surface free energy. There are several plasma methods to increase surface energy, including physical and chemical plasmas along with PECVD coating surfaces.  In addition, plasma can increase the surface area of bonding by nano-roughening a surface.  Surfaces that are highly ordered, or very crystalline, tend to have very low surface energies.  To disrupt that order, ionized plasma gas is utilized to bombard the surface. This article discusses adhesion to non-stick coatings of biological molecules, silicon overmolds and primers. " READ FULL ARTICLE.

Image: Wikimedia Commons/Clleyagr

New Design Improves Performance of Flexible Wearable Electronics

From North Carolina State University, June 22, 2017 by Mehmet Ozturk:

"In a proof-of-concept study, North Carolina State University engineers have designed a flexible thermoelectric energy harvester that has the potential to rival the effectiveness of existing power wearable electronic devices using body heat as the only source of energy. One of the key challenges of a flexible harvester is to connect thermoelectric elements in series using reliable, low-resistivity interconnects. Researchers use a liquid metal of gallium and indium - a common, non-toxic alloy called EGaIn - to connect the thermoelectric 'legs.' Liquid metal in the flexible thermoelectric device allows for self-healing. Rigid devices do not have the ability to heal themselves. READ FULL ARTICLE.

Solar Glasses: A Glimpse Into the Bright Future of Wearable Electronics

From Advanced Science News, June 24, 2017 by John Uhlrich:
" In an important step forward for wearable electronics, researchers at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology have designed and built a set of "solar glasses", which integrate transparent solar cells into the lenses and electronics into the frames, to measure and display the instantaneous light intensity and ambient temperature. The research team used a combination of commercially available thiophene- and fullerene-based polymers to form the solar cells, where their properties of light weight, processability, transparency, and low-light performance are put on full display. The low-light performance is of paramount importance because the solar glasses are designed to be fully functional even under office lighting indoors (500 lux). READ FULL ARTICLE.
Large Portfolio of 2D Semiconductor Materials Benefits Next-generation Flexible Electronics

From Nanowerk, May 23, 2017 by Michael Berger:
" A recent Review article in Small by Dr. Li Gao from Nanjing University of Science and Technology, examines the recent advancement of flexible 2D electronic devices based on transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) and black phosphorous (BP or phosphorene). Gao discusses the mechanical properties and strain-tunability of typical 2D semiconductors first, followed by novel growth and fabrication techniques that are compatible for 2D flexible devices. Subsequently, she presents detailed application examples of field-effect transistors, photodetectors, strain and chemical sensors, and supercapacitors, with a final discussion of potential approaches and challenges to achieve 2D stretchable devices. READ FULL ARTICLE.

Source: Nanowerk
Image: Nanjing University of Science and Technology

Nanoparticles Could Spur Better LEDs, Invisibility Cloaks

From University of Michigan, July 19, 2017 by Gabe Cherry:
" In an advance that could boost the efficiency of LED lighting by 50 percent and even pave the way for invisibility cloaking devices, a team of University of Michigan researchers have developed a new technique that peppers metallic nanoparticles into semiconductors. This is the first technique that can inexpensively grow metal nanoparticles both on and below the surface of semiconductors. The team discovered a simple way that integrates easily with the molecular beam epitaxy process used to make semiconductors. They applied an ion beam between these layers -- a step that pushes metal out of the semiconductor wafer and onto the surface. Their size and placement can be precisely controlled by varying the angle and intensity of the ion beam.  Because the technique allows precise control over the nanoparticle distribution, the researchers say it may one day be useful for cloaks that render objects partially invisible by inducing a phenomenon known as "reverse refraction. READ FULL ARTICLE.
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Society of Vacuum Coaters Foundation

Founding Principle: The Society of Vacuum Coaters recognizes that in order to sustain its growth, it is important to attract young, well trained individuals to the field of Vacuum Coatings.

The SVC Foundation pursues this principle by providing scholarships to well qualified students planning to enter fields related to vacuum coatings, and/or providing stipends for travel expenses to attend the annual SVC Technical Conference, usually to present technical papers. The Society of Vacuum Coaters (SVC), the SVCF's founder, and AIMCAL, an organization committed to advancing vacuum roll-coating technology, and their members, provides support for the Foundation to pursue these goals.

Since its inception in 2002, the SVCF has awarded more than 50 scholarships and travel awards totaling over $180,000 to students from 18 countries. Our support can really have an impact in the life of these students; quoting a recent award recipient:

"Not only does the scholarship give the gift of financial support and the possibility to continue learning, it also gives those that have a passion for vacuum coating the blessing of attending such a wonderful program [SVC TechCon] to network and further their knowledge."

Inviting scholarship recipients to the SVC TechCon is an important element of the overall strategy for attracting new talent to our industry. Scholarship beneficiaries carry a special identification on the TechCon badge and we encourage you to meet them and make them feel welcome.

Scholarship Applications must be postmarked by November 30th of each year.

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SVConnections Contributing Editors: 
Carl M. Lampert, SVC Technical Director 
Joyce Lampert

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