AVS2010 Session VT+MS-TuM: Outgassing, Contamination Control, and Process Modeling

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 8:00 AM in Laguna

Tuesday Morning

Time Period TuM Sessions | Abstract Timeline | Topic VT Sessions | Time Periods | Topics | AVS2010 Schedule

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8:00 AM VT+MS-TuM-1 Reduction of Hydrogen Content in Stainless Steel Vacuum Components
Lily Wang, Richard Weinberg, Kathy Lao (Los Alamos National Laboratory)

Hydrogen is dissolved in stainless steel during the initial phases of production and fabrication. At room temperature, the dissolved hydrogen slowly diffuses out of the stainless steel. For stainless steel vessels assembled from commercially available vacuum components, we consistently measured constant rates of gas pressure increase in these sealed stainless steel vessels after they had been evacuated to 1 x 10-7 torr. The pressure in a 97 cc stainless steel vessel can reach up to 0.8 torr in six months at room temperature. The gas accumulated in these vessels, previously vacuum baked at 150°C for 48 hours to remove adsorbed gas, was analyzed to be essentially hydrogen. To determine how effective high-temperature vacuum bake out is in reducing the hydrogen content in the stainless steel components, we undertook a study that involved vacuum bakeout of the components at 400°C for 10 days and analysis of the hydrogen contents of the components with and without the vacuum bakeout. The hydrogen concentrations were measured by a LECO analyzer. The results will be presented and compared with that predicted by the Fick’s law of diffusion.

8:20 AM VT+MS-TuM-2 Hydrogen Outgassing in a Small Vacuum Chamber
Robert F. Berg (National Institute of Standards and Technology)

In a closed vacuum chamber, the problem of hydrogen outgassing from stainless steel increases with both the temperature and the chamber’s surface-to-volume ratio. This talk will describe the outgassing in a chamber that is used to measure the vapor pressures of organic compounds in the range from 1 Pa to 100 kPa. The chamber, which is a small manifold built from stainless steel fittings and two capacitance diaphragm gauges, has a combination of challenges not usually present in a larger apparatus at room temperature. (1) Its volume of only 29 cm3 created a relatively large surface-to-volume ratio. (2) Operating at temperatures as high as 200 °C greatly increased the outgassing rate. (3) The pressure gauges limited the maximum allowed bakeout temperature.

Closing the valve to the vacuum pump caused the pressure to increase nonlinearly with time. The initial rate slowed during several hours and usually became linear with time within one day. Intermittent pumping during one month at 200 °C showed that the linear rate decreased with an exponential time constant of approximately 11 days, which was consistent with the diffusion of hydrogen from the stainless steel fittings. Understanding this behavior is important because a pressure increase of 1 Pa/day (3 x 10-10 Pa m3/s) can cause a significant error in the vapor pressure measurement. A model that accounts for the diffusion of hydrogen in the chamber wall and its nonlinear accumulation in the chamber volume will be compared to the pressure measurements.

8:40 AM VT+MS-TuM-3 Point-of-Use Abatement Devices and Exhaust Management Strategies
Mike Sherer (Sherer Consulting Services, Inc.)
Semiconductor processes emit various contaminants which require exhaust management and in some cases point-of-use (POU) abatement. It is important to understand process exhaust management strategies, and to select the best, lowest cost-of-ownership POU abatement devices. This presentation will discuss these topics and provide relevant technical information.
9:20 AM VT+MS-TuM-5 Novel Instrument Capable of Efficient Gas Exchange to Remove Gas-phase Contamination in Complex Volumes Without Purging or High Vacuum
Jason Brown, James Hochrein, Steven Thornberg (Sandia National Laboratories)
Countless systems used in research and in industry contain complex assemblies that are sealed in some type of enclosure, meant to isolate them from the harsh operating environment of the open atmosphere and to maintain a pristine internal atmosphere. Unfortunately, the internal atmosphere of any sealed component or system is, in the long-term, only as clean as the materials sealed within its enclosure. Over time, moisture or other volatile contaminants initially trapped in the materials can begin to evolve and accumulate with potentially detrimental effects on the functionality of the component. This problem can be extremely difficult to address, depending on the physical and mechanical constraints of the particular system. Recently, an instrument was developed at Sandia National Laboratories that can “clean” the internal atmosphere of a critical optical component that cannot be subjected to conventional conditioning methods (such as N2/Ar purge, high-vacuum pumpdown, etc.). By using multiple pressurization and evacuation cycles tightly controlled within a narrow ±2 psig window, the instrument fully and efficiently exchanges the liters of moisture- and contamination-laden internal gas of the component with clean, dry N2. This process is repeated as moisture from the internal materials diffuses back into the gas phase until, over time, the source of the moisture is depleted. This instrument has been successful in reducing the equilibrium gas-phase moisture levels in the optical component from the thousands of PPMv (parts per million by volume) to single-digit PPMv. This instrument, called the “Automated Pressure Cycler,” will be discussed in detail.
10:00 AM BREAK - Complimentary Coffee in Exhibit Hall
10:40 AM VT+MS-TuM-9 Modeling, Design, Fabrication, and Characterization of a Pulsed Vacuum System
Zayd C. Leseman, Joseph Butner (University of New Mexico)
Systems utilizing low to medium vacuum levels are becoming increasing popular due to packaging of micro and nanoelectronic devices, exploration of surface phehomena, and gas-phase etching of materials. In this work, pulsed vacuum systems are modeled, designed, fabricated, and characterized. Modeling efforts focus on methods for calibration of volumes, pump-down / pressure-up times, and vacuum system configuration considerations. As a result of this systems of linear equations are developed and solved, as well as systems of coupled differential equations which are solved analytically and numerically (when necessary). As a result of this modeling effort a new method has emerged for vacuum processing at discrete pressures and discrete times. Experimental validation is presented in regards to specific applications: MEMS environmentally dependent stiction failure, vapor phase lubrication of MEMS, and XeF2 vapor phase etching of Si.
Time Period TuM Sessions | Abstract Timeline | Topic VT Sessions | Time Periods | Topics | AVS2010 Schedule