Sputter Coater questions

Hey all, I saw that Sputter Coater that was donated when I was there on Tuesday, but was kinda busy and didn’t get a chance to inspect it. I was wondering if anyone had any information on it, make and model, spec sheets, how too manuals etc. Also, is it fully functional? What do we need to make it work.

I have no idea what we could use it for yet, but I am super curious about it before it gets gutted for shiny stainless baubles :wink:

We have full documentation for it, and (as far as I’m aware) its a complete unit. On the other hand we lack the sorts of electromagnetic microscope that are its only real practical purpose to serve, its also a unit that’s out of its support life (plus its super expensive to ship) so it doesn’t have any real resale value, finally something is broken about it. I personally don’t remember what, but its probably pretty minor from the explanation I was given as to why we got given it, since the main issue is its no longer supported. So while we almost certainly could try fix it, and hook it up to one of our other vacuum pumps we really can’t use it for anything, since without the microscopes we can’t even demonstrate WHY this huge device exists.

On the other hand it is standard equipment racks, and so there was a suggestion by another member for a temporary use that it could make a really cool DJ booth or similar for the upcoming fundraiser party. Longer term we could split it into two half height racks, break the center section down into usable steel (and scrap metal, which leaves for free). Buzz even suggested a cool use for the main chamber, so the manuals would be the only thing left in that use case.

Please don’t scavenge any parts from it just yet - I’ve been talking to a few people about it and I may have a really really cool use for it as a group project to get it going again. It’s missing half the components necessary to pull a decent vacuum, and I’m trying to sort out replacement parts we can adapt to get the insanely high vacuum it needs (if you’re not familiar with this kind of equipment a standard vacuum pump certainly won’t cut it). Parts will be pricey but I’m basically willing to foot the (thousands of $$) bill myself to make it operational. Anything you remove or damage I may have to go through the hassle of repairing or re-buying. Keep it intact a little bit longer before you repurpose it as just a cool table or something. :stuck_out_tongue:

Might be worth putting a note on it just in case! If nothing comes of that, just the vacuum and high voltage side would make a decent fusor, for a neat little demo.

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Rimplus, how much is missing? Just the diffusion pump or are there other big mechanical parts not there ?

Is it also useful for making a mirrored surface?

What level of vacuum is needed for this to work?

@riumplus. just as a FYI. I personally have a 2-stage high performance rotary vane deep vacuum pump that I have used in the past for evacuating airconditioning systems etc. ping me if you want to borrow it. :slight_smile:

Just an update on this so I don’t leave anyone hanging - I’m currently working multiple 16-hour days in a row as I’m about to launch one of my startups about a certain food product in Sydney this weekend. I endeavour to have a proper response within the next week or two. Until then, someone else is welcome to beat me to posting details, photos etc about the equipment! I haven’t been through it all completely thoroughly myself yet. Just please don’t damage something on it.

From when I was looking at it, it seems to be a freeze etcher. I haven’t been able to find much documentation on freeze etching, however it looks to be a procedure you can use a sputter coater for.
So I’ll take it upon myself to assume that our little (big) device is a sputter coater with a few extra features. You can also assume that from the massive size of the thing vs the size of the chamber.

Me and @merseyless have been chatting and apparently all we need at this stage is something to pull the primary vacuum and it has its own defusor vacuum pump already installed and apparently working (that’s the final stage). The second thing we need is some nitrogen in a bottle.

Other then that, it should only need some love.