Sputter coater

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==Training==The sputter coater is a realtively easy and straightforward machine to use. However some basic training must be provided before you use it. The appropriate person to contact is Teti Stratoudaki or Richard Smith. Among the various technical points that you need to know to opperate the sputter coater you must also be made aware of the basic good manners that you need to have. This is a shared facility and any misconduct has effect on all the Fab Lab users.

Important information regarding the ID tag system

An ID tag is required to run the sputter coater. If you are new in the lab and you need to use the sputterer please contact Teti Stratoudaki or Richard Smith who can issue a tag for you. The tag must be left on the tag reader, on top of the sputter coater, while the sputtering is taking place. The tag reader of the sputter coater is linked to the computer (sofa), next to the sputterer. In the unlikely event that the computer needs to be restarted, the software that controls the sputter coater needs to be restarted as well:

  • cd /sputterer
  • sudo ./run_sputterer_access_control

You will have to provide the password for the computer (sofa) and the sputterer should then be back in working order.

Thickness calibration

To calibrate the sputter coater FTM coat to a nominal thickness then pass the sample to Rod Dykeman who'll scratch the coating and measure it using a Tallystep.

If the coating is too hard (eg ITO) then you'll have to mask out some areas using photoresist and lift off to provide an edge. This might be possible using some dabs of photoresist rather than a spin-coated layer and mask exposure.

Changing the target metal

If you need to change the target metal sources you need to understand the use of spacers. There are two kinds of spacers: the circular aluminium backing plates and the "batman shaped" spacers. The backing plates are placed underneath the targets and their function is to bring the two targets to the same level. In the case that one of the targets is thicker than the other, one or more of these backing plates are placed underneath the thinner target. The "batman shaped" spacers are used to maintain a gap of 1.5mm between the inside of the assembly shield (that is the top "binocular" shaped part of the target assembly) and the front face of the targets. The manufacturer has assumed a standard target thickness of 0.3mm and in this case no spacers need to be used. However, most of the targets that we have in the lab are thicker than 0.3mm and spacers are needed.