Why Plasma Etch?
Plasma etching technology is being used in all types of industries to remove organic contamination, remove residues, alter surface properties (such as wettability, inter-material bond strength, adhesion, etc), and to significantly improve the manufacturability of products.
Plasma Etch, Inc. delivers highly customizable, reliable, top-of-class plasma processing solutions for companies in virtually every industry. Our systems deliver superior uniformity, processing speed, ease of use, and cost efficiency with exceptional results.
The following information will help you understand the facts and features that have established Plasma Etch, Inc. as the leader in high-capacity plasma systems. Plasma Etch, Inc. has invested extensive research and development time over the last 35 years to develop the most cutting-edge technologies available for plasma treatment. We have created a variety of patented features which are exclusive to our company’s plasma systems. These features allow for the most uniform, effective plasma treatments offered by any plasma system on the market.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in temperature control?
During plasma treatment, the process temperature is one of the most important parameters for ensuring uniform and effective treatment. Plasma Etch, Inc. manufactures equipment featuring a patented design which directly regulates the temperature of the electrode. A consistent temperature is able to be maintained throughout the entire plasma sequence with sophisticated computer automation. This technique gives the operator absolute control of the operating environment.
Any temperature within the system's control range can be selected and is then automatically maintained. Through this design, the plasma system is able to function at the highest allowable temperature for any given material or substrate, ensuring that you’re able to process your materials at the fastest possible rate. You can repeat the process as many times as you choose with consistent results every time. This technology eliminates the need to "warm up" or "pre-run" the plasma system and there is no throughput limiting intermittent service/stabilization cycle as is present in competing plasma systems.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in vacuum plasma chamber design?
Aluminum is the material of choice for the plasma etching process to achieve total uniformity across a vast array of materials/substrates. We manufacture our vacuum chambers out of durable, aerospace-grade aluminum of the highest quality.
Plasma etch processing does have the ability to cause severe damage to any substrate if the proper controls are not in place. Lack of uniformity results in burned, warped, and modified substrates or materials, so we developed a solution to meet those challenges. One of our patented features—electrostatic shielding—helps generate a high energy and uniform plasma across the electrode surface. This feature eliminates much of the risk of plasma damage during the plasma etching process.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in system software?
The operating interface for every Plasma Etch, Inc. plasma etcher comes with our own custom software specifically designed for our systems. This software allows for the monitoring and automation of all the process parameters during the plasma sequence. Using this software you can:
- Establish process parameter set-points
- Monitor and record process parameters
- Set alarms/record “out of limit” conditions
- Archive process data/results
- Automate and (in real-time) monitor the process sequence
- Create recipes for individual parts/materials
- Develop sequential (multi-step) recipes
By using our system software, you’ll have fine-grained control over every aspect of the plasma process. Our software reduces operator error and will rapidly accelerate your process development.
We happily offer support and training for our system software direct from the engineers who employ this software on a daily basis in our own facilities.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in etch rates?
Our systems are able to produce etch rates that are more than three times faster than competing plasma systems. The combination of our unique designs and patented features such as temperature control and electrostatic shielding allow us to deliver unparalleled quality and speed in plasma processing.
If you would like to know what potential etch rates you could achieve, we offer free sample processing for you to evaluate features such as etch rates and process uniformity.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in electrode design?
We manufacture several types of systems for different purposes:
- Square chambers (with horizontal planar electrodes)
- Tumbler chambers (with an end-loading drum for batch small-parts processing)
- Reel-to-reel chambers (for spooled flexible substrates)
- Turn-table chambers (with a rotating circular electrode able to process lead frame magazines)
- Rotary chambers (with rotating dual-sided horizontal planar electrodes)
Our electrodes do not inhibit the dispersal of gases or compromise etch back performance in any way. Our powered and grounded electrodes etch at the same rate and substrates do not require any flipping or moving to achieve maximum process uniformity.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in R.F. generators/power supplies?
The R.F. generator/power supply is a critical parameter in the plasma process since the frequency and power level directly affect processing rates. Most of our systems can be equipped with either 13.56MHz or (50/100)KHz generators at a range of power levels. This ensures that you’re able to process your materials/substrates with mission-specific equipment that maximizes uniformity and efficiency.
Low frequency R.F. generators are typically employed in plasma etching processes as they’re able to deliver a cost-effective, power efficient plasma treatment. High frequency R.F. generators are typically employed in plasma etching processes as it creates a highly reactive plasma and high etch rates.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in component parts?
We partner with various companies to manufacture our systems with high quality, commercially available components and sub-assemblies. This helps ensure that your system is always easily repaired and reliable. We work hard to ensure that your system is comprised of the best components the market has to offer.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in gas distribution?
As each client’s plasma process may differ from the next, we provide several different options for gas distribution. Our systems can be equipped with analog rotometers, digital mass flow controllers as well as a computer-automated gas steering matrix. The gas steering matrix allows between 2-5 selectable gas inputs. Two of these gas inputs can be combined at any time for the plasma process. The mass flow controllers are automatically recalibrated for each selected gas.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in nitrogen purging?
Our plasma systems using CF4 as a process gas feature nitrogen purging that is automatic and functional any time the vacuum pump is operational. Our purging function is transparent to the operator and has no impact on normal processing.
What does Plasma Etch, Inc. offer in system reliability?
We have taken extensive measures to create designs which maximize system reliability and minimize cost of ownership. We use high quality, industry proven components and sub-assemblies throughout our plasma equipment. This is the Plasma Etch, Inc. philosophy; we manufacture highly reliable systems and offer it at a competitive price. A balance of our custom designs, knowledge of plasma, quality materials, excellent workmanship, and attention to detail has resulted in a reputation for reliability and superior results.