Vacuum Technology

Description

The Vacuum Technology Short Course includes two short textbooks – one for Basic Vacuum concepts and terminology and one for Advanced Vacuum concepts and terminology.  In addition the short course includes a 16-24 hour hands-on laboratory section that can be broken into a series of 4 individual modules that focus on the basic assembly, testing, and characterization of simple vacuum systems especially designed and constructed for NEATEC.  Students are introduced to the fundamentals of pressure measurement, vacuum technology components, and vacuum system configurations through two hands-on systems.  The first is a basic vacuum trainer that stresses simple assembly, base system pressure measurement, and basic leak troubleshooting. The second system is a ‘Fastener and Seals’ trainer that combines a wide array of commercial vacuum fittings and seals in a compact system for assembly and test.  Lastly, the final module includes a commercial He leak detector for students to use in identifying and resolving (real) leaks in the assembled vacuum trainers.  Currently, this section includes presentations from our collaborator, Pfeiffer Vacuum Systems.  A more in-depth module on He Leak Detector instruction is forthcoming.

Frequently Asked Questions

What 2yr/4r degree programs are these modules appropriate for?

Mechanical Engineering Technology; Electrical Engineering Technology; Semiconductor Manufacturing

What types courses are these modules appropriate for?

Mechanical Engineering Technology; Electrical Engineering Technology; Semiconductor Manufacturing.

What academic level are these modules appropriate for?

All levels of undergraduate students.

What student backgrounds are these modules appropriate for?

Engineering or Engineering Technology and related STEM backgrounds.

What kinds of formats have been used with these modules?

All modules utilize a hands-on lab format compatible with a conventional undergraduate laboratory.

Learning Objectives

Technical and Information Literacy – Students will read, analyze, and utilize technical documents such as spreadsheets, parts checklists, basic vacuum system assembly schematics, testing and assembly procedures, and basic data documentation and analysis procedures.

Critical Thinking/Systems Level Troubleshooting – Students will be applying basic troubleshooting techniques to various vacuum system components including both real leaks virtual leaks. Students will also learn to utilize a He leak detector to aid in system troubleshooting.

Working Collaboratively – Students will interact in groups to work on assembly, testing, and troubleshooting tasks in a non-competitive environment.

Learning Outcomes

 

Students will demonstrate knowledge of the fundamentals of vacuum and pressure, pressure measurement, vacuum technology components, and vacuum system configurations.

Students will demonstrate familiarity with the vacuum generation, measurement and gas flow utilized in modern manufacturing based on hands-on assembly and testing of a basic vacuum system.

Students will demonstrate competency in basic vacuum system operation and troubleshooting including identification of operational issues, acquisition of operational data, and formulation of possible solutions.

Students will demonstrate competency in advanced vacuum system operation, troubleshooting, and leak detection including identification of operational issues, usage of leak-check protocols, and utilization of He-leak detector technology.

Required Tools and Equipment

These modules utilize custom designed and assembled training systems comprised of commercially available vacuum components compatible with standard vacuum pumps and gauges. Each activity lists parts used.

Hands-on Activities

Video Vacuum Volume 1: The Phantom Menace

This interactive presentation is approximately 12 minutes long and introduces vacuum system concepts. 

Video Vacuum Volume 1 The Phantom Menace (2)

Basic Vacuum System Principles

This introductory lecture details a vacuum system concepts and illustrates its construction with necessary components.

Basic Vacuum System Principles Intro

Basic Vacuum Technology Training System Module

This module is comprised of a series of ‘hands-on’ activities suitable for a performance-learning based approach (or a project-based curriculum with additional content).  It is comprised of a custom-designed basic vacuum training module including a vacuum manifold, chamber (bell jar) and a Pirani vacuum gauge. Schematic and parts lists are included.  The system is expandable to include plasma generation inside chamber (see separate NEATEC content download for this operation mode). Three basic lab activities are included for module: System Assembly, System Pumpdown, and Leak Rate Measurement.  For data acquisition a LabQuest data logger system is used which utilized the Pirani gauge.  Representative data are included.  For the Leak Rate Measurement activity (for both real and virtual vacuum leaks) an example Excel spreadsheet is included to convert the measured pressure rise (typically mTorr/second) to a true leak rate (sccm or cc/s).

Exercise #1–Component Identification and System Assembly 

Basics Vacuum Systems Training

 

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Vacuum Trainer Schematic

 

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Vacuum Trainer Parts Cost List 

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Exercise #2–System Pumpdown and Characterization

Example of a Pumpdown Curve

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Exercise #3–Vacuum System Leaks (Real and Virtual) Measurements 

Leak Rate Measurement of Basic Vacuum Training System

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Excel Conversion of Rate of ‘Rise to Leak’ Ratio

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Vacuum Fastener and Seals Component Trainer Module 

This module is comprised of a series of ‘hands-on’ activities suitable for a performance-learning based approach (or a project-based curriculum with additional content).  It is comprised of a custom-designed vacuum ‘fitting trainer’ – a vacuum chamber comprised entirely of commercial vacuum parts and seals typically encountered in low- and high-temperature processing equipment for the semiconductor and semiconductor-derivative manufacturing industry. It includes conventional o-ring seals, VCO-seals, VCR seals, Swagelok tube fitting seals, Cu-gasket conflats, and ASA multi-flange connectors.  The system incorporates a conventional Pirani gauge and is utilized for He-leak detector testing.  The following Activity folders include assembly and initial test lab descriptions.  Although not included in the folders below, all the Pumpdown and Leak Rate Measurement activities described for the Basic Vacuum Training System above can be repeated with the Vacuum Fastener and Seals Component Trainer.

He Leak Detector Module

This module is currently under assembly and will be soon be updated.  Currently, the activities use a Pfeiffer ASM340 2.5 L/S He Leak Detector (commercial He Leak Detector commonly used in industry) to illustrate principles, practice and techniques for vacuum system troubleshooting.  The folder below includes two introduction PDF presentations utilized by staff from Pfeiffer Vacuum who have served as instructors for NEATEC vacuum technology training modules for 2-year, 4-year college students and incumbent semiconductor tool technicians.