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Machine for Continuous Processing of Sheet-Transported Material in a High Vacuum Chamber

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000062401D
Original Publication Date: 1986-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-09
Document File: 2 page(s) / 47K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Carden, GR: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

A high vacuum process chamber applies a variety of chemicals, for sheet-transported material, without vacuum interruption in a graduated vacuum chamber process. The material is introduced into the process chamber through one or more antechambers that are connected to a vacuum pump which lowers the pressure. The material continues into the adjacent chamber where vacuum is incremented until the process chamber is reached where the desired pressure is maintained (see drawing). Similarly, upon leaving the process chamber(s), the material passes through one or more post- process chambers which step the pressure back up to atmospheric. Depending on the particular process needs, the material can be introduced on a continuous, non-stop basis.

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Machine for Continuous Processing of Sheet-Transported Material in a High Vacuum Chamber

A high vacuum process chamber applies a variety of chemicals, for sheet- transported material, without vacuum interruption in a graduated vacuum chamber process. The material is introduced into the process chamber through one or more antechambers that are connected to a vacuum pump which lowers the pressure. The material continues into the adjacent chamber where vacuum is incremented until the process chamber is reached where the desired pressure is maintained (see drawing). Similarly, upon leaving the process chamber(s), the material passes through one or more post- process chambers which step the pressure back up to atmospheric. Depending on the particular process needs, the material can be introduced on a continuous, non-stop basis. Alternately, the material "belt" can be stopped and started to accommodate a step-and-repeat process in the process chamber. This latter method could also accommodate stamping finished parts off the belt while it is stopped. Stamping would take place outside the chamber. The tension of the material belt would be regulated to maintain constant (for continuous operation) or consistent (for stop/start operation) tension. The clearance between the openings in the chamber walls and the material is kept to a minimum. This results in the least possible conductance of gas molecules into subsequent (lower pressure) chambers. The conductance is dictated by the pressure differential across the wall, the wall thickness or tube length, and the clearance between the slit and the material. Approximate clearance is 0.0005 to 0.002 inch. Where desired, the openings can be coated wit...