Differentiating Between Physical and Chemical Deposition Methods

Both physical and chemical deposition play a large role in many popular industries today.

sputter-processThin film evaporation and deposition is essentially the application of an extremely thin film of material – relative to the size of a few atoms – onto what is known as a “substrate” surface. It is then coated with a specific material that is chosen by the operator to form layers. The process of thin film deposition is an integral part of today’s semiconductor industries, solar panel production, CD manufacturing, and other optical device industries.

Physical and Chemical Deposition

Thin film deposition is divided into two categories – physical deposition and chemical deposition. Although they may sound similar, they have significant differences that allow them to perform tasks that the other cannot.

Chemical deposition utilizes a fluid precursor to produce a chemical change on a surface – resulting in a chemically deposited coat. An example of this is chemical vapor deposition which produces a high-purity, high-quality solid material that is used in the semiconductor industry today.

Physical deposition on the other hand, refers to a more broad range of technologies where a specific material is released from a designated source and deposited onto a substrate through the use of a mechanical, thermodynamic, or electromechanical process. Two of the most common techniques of physical vapor deposition are sputtering and evaporation – two methods that differ from each other due to their unique step-by-step processes.

Thermal Evaporation

The process of thermal evaporation involves the heating of a solid material that coats a substrate within a high vacuum chamber until it begins to boil and evaporates, therefore producing high vapor pressure. Now, inside this vacuum chamber, even a small amount of vapor pressure is enough to produce a cloud of vapor. This now evaporated material creates a stream that can travel through the vacuum environment without reacting or affecting the other atoms within the chamber. It will then travel all the way until it hits the substrate, thus “sticking” onto it as a thin film or coating.


The process of sputtering is essentially the bombardment of a target material with a high amount of high-energy particles. Typically it’s used as a deposition method on a substrate for silicon wafers or solar panels. These substrates that are going to be coated are placed within a vacuum chamber that contains an inert gas. A negative electric charge is then utilized on the material that is going to be deposited, which then forces the plasma within the chamber to glow. The atoms are then sputtered off of the target through high-impact collisions with the inert gas, carrying these particles throughout the sputtering systems and then ultimately ending up being deposited as a thin film.

Denton Vacuum, LLC manufactures the finest ion beam sputter deposition equipment on the market. For questions on how you can go about purchasing these products, visit Denton Vacuum, LLC online today.

Meeting Increased Energy Demands with Cleaner Policies

energy-consumptionOne of the biggest challenges the global community faces in the coming decades is how to solve the fundamental problem of energy consumption. As expert Dev Randhawa puts it, the baseload demand will grow exponentially:

“You’ve got countries like Saudi Arabia and [the] Middle East that are building reactors, because they’ve realized that it’s not only clean energy, it’s baseload. We all [go home] and turn on our appliances at the same time, and there’s a big demand right away…”

That demand can’t be met by fossil fuels, especially as the climate changes. Randhawa points out the great freeze Canada experienced recently. The strain on the power grid causes black or brownouts that can make life quite difficult for developing nations especially. He further suggested that nations that don’t want nuclear within their borders have the option of leasing or acquiring power from neighboring countries at a premium. The end result is more efficient power generation, no matter which country actually hosts the reactor.

Hybrid Energy Strategy

The future of energy isn’t overly reliant on any one power source, but instead will combine multiple sources of power to create a more efficient power grid able to respond to peak usage. Better storage capacity for alternative energy does help to make wind and solar viable, but not as the sole provider of energy.

Another advantage to nuclear is that it’s cost effective. Recent studies have shown power plants can survive for up to 75 years, and replacing components such as steam generators can help improve that lifespan.

Seven facts about Len Blavatnik

1Written by Access Industries

Here are some interesting facts about Len Blavatnik, the investor and entrepreneur who is also Britain’s richest man:

Although he is britain’s richest man, he was born in the Ukraine and studied at Moscow State University. In 1978 he migrated to the United States and gained citizenship in 1984. His education began with a degree in computer science at Columbia followed by a Harvard MBA.

His most publicized and famous deal was the 2011 purchase of the Warner Music group for 3.3 billion dollars. With it came the label that signed artists like Coldplay.

His Yacht is named Odessa after the city where he was born in the Ukraine. He is known to throw a party on the Yacht every year during the Cannes film festival. This event is attended by hollywood and a-list celebrities.

He owns one of the few grade 2 listed homes in the exclusive Kensington Palace gardens, London. Grade The house is valued at approximately 41 millions sterling pounds. As a listed home, it is considered to be of special architectural and cultural significance.

The Blavatnik Foundation is one of the world’s leading supporters of scientific, education and cultural awards. The most famous of these is the Blavatnik Young Scientists Award which started in 2007. He has also personally made donations to Yale, Harvard and Oxford univsersities.

He is married and has two sons and two daughters. His daughter’s Bat mitzvahs had Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars performing.
Len Blavatnik needs no introduction. He is the man at the top of Access Industries and world renowned philanthropist.

Understanding Ion Beam Sputter Deposition

Read below to find out how IBS is advantageous when it comes to thin film deposition.

Manufacturing optical thin films is a large industry that utilizes various techniques in order to achieve the highest quality possible. One of the more common approaches to these films is by using ion beam sputter deposition. Taking place in a vacuum chamber, IBS typically uses a high energy ion beam as the primary source – this is typically composed of various metals or oxides.

How does IBS work?

The high energy beam that’s shot out towards the target material creates a momentum that causes the atoms and molecules to “sputter” off onto the substrate, thus creating the thin film. As mentioned before, the vacuum chamber plays a vital role in the entire process. Note that there is oxygen present within the vacuum chamber at low pressures. This is designed to create oxidation or re-oxidize when needed.

What about the Quality?

What results from IBS is a highly uniform, highly dense film with excellent coverage and adhesion to the substrate itself. This is important because films require mechanical durability and stability. IBS provides a great amount of precision and makes hitting performance targets efficient and easier than PVD thermal evaporation. This process can also be automated, which doesn’t require supervision from the operator.

Summing it Up

IBS delivers excellence when it comes to both stability and durability of optical thin films. They also have the lowest absorption rate of any other type of coating type. There are very few drawbacks to utilizing this method, except for the limited range of materials that can be used – typically going to be metal oxides. IBS proves that it’s both a reliable and consistent method of generating thin films.


Denton Vacuum, LLC manufactures high-quality systems for electron microscopy, ophthalmic applications, and PVD coating.

Optical Coatings on Telescopes

Summary: This is why some telescopes cost substantially more than others.

For most people, seeing the planets will require little more than a telescope and a clear evening. However, serious star gazers will want to consider an upgrade to telescopes that feature lenses treated by optical coating systems. These lenses have several advantages over the standard store-bought varieties, but they aren’t always easy for the newcomer to recognize. If you’re wondering why some telescopes are vastly different in price, this may help you understand.


Coating Types

Before we dive into coating types, we need to first make note of the method in which the lens is coated. Cheaper methods, like the dip and bake, may lower the cost to you but the quality suffers greatly. The coatings don’t last as long as an ebeam coating would. Within a year or two you’ll literally wipe away the coating.

Aluminum and titanium oxide, as well as magnesium fluoride, represent the most common substance used. High quality lenses are “fully coated,” which means that the coating has been applied to both sides. This is different from “multi-coated” lenses, which may also carry a high price tag. The multi-coat name comes from the multiple layers of chemicals applied to the lens in order to alter properties like light transmission.

Buying Your Telescope

In addition to any coatings applied to the lens of the telescope, you might want some additional upgrades. A tripod mounted telescope, for instance, are easy to set up and provide stability. You can also purchase telescopes with recording capabilities, so you can capture video footage for time lapse editing later.

Bio: Denton Vacuum, LLC specializes in ion beam assisted deposition systems for optical coating and advanced manufacturing. Denton Vacuum, LLC sells equipment used in the aerospace, automotive and medical industries.

High-Impact, No Stress Home Protection Measures

With recent disasters on the news, you may be thinking about how best to protect your home against inclement weather and other acts of god. There are a couple of easy enhancements you can make to your home to round out your home protection set-up. Properly tested and graded doors like storm doors and hurricane impact doors can help prevent pressure build-up in the home, protect inner doors and glass inserts from debris, and prevent water and air from entering your home.



Approvals to Look For

If you live in a high-wind area, you may want to look for storm doors that are rated for hurricane approval. For the highest levels of approval doors must be tested and rated using a variety of tests, including impact and cyclic tests, air infiltration tests, uniform static air resistance tests, large missile tests, and water resistance tests. Make sure your door has a “sweep”, a strip along the bottom of the door designed to keep out bugs, air, and moisture. Door closers may be included or added to pull doors shut on their own again if blown open.


Maintenance Tips

Regular maintenance ensures storm doors will continue to provide high quality protection against rain, wind, and debris. Check for dents, scratches, torn material, and debris in hinges and between panels. Check the closer and latches to ensure they are securely attached to both the door and the door jamb. Regularly oil and open and close storm doors to check on their proper function.


Additional Solutions

To enhance home security during hurricanes and other inclement weather, consider purchasing storm shutters made of plywood, fabric panels, or corrugated steel or aluminum, depending on your needs. There are a variety of pros and cons; however, so long as they are properly installed almost all solutions will improve overall house safety.


Bio: ETO Doors is a custom door manufacturer based out of Los Angeles with two showrooms in New York and Las Vegas. They carry a variety of doors available for custom order or purchase online, with a variety of specialty options such as solid wood and oil-rubbed bronze embellishments. Read ETO Doors reviews, browse their selection, and more online at the ETO Doors site.

How Sputtering Can Affect the Finish on a Substrate

Have you ever seen the fine polish on the exhaust pipe of a motorcycle? The metal shaping process isn’t how bikes get their sheen, and polish can only get someone so far. These parts have all been through a sputter coater designed to give an even finish, most likely thin film deposition. This even coating gives the smooth, shiny appearance hobbyists love with minimal material waste. That has helped keep costs for parts down and kept markets alive.


Sputtering is useful in many kinds of advanced manufacturing, especially manufacturing metalized products. The aerospace and automobile industries could not produce what they are able to without some efficient method that reduces waste and produces the perfect finish.

Why Sputtering?

A substrate can be coated in thin films of metallic materials, as long as it is evenly rotated to avoid unnecessary buildup. That’s one of the advantages to sputtering, an even coat free from defects. That might not matter to someone riding a bicycle, who finds a small metallic imperfection, but it makes a huge difference in precision applications for healthcare practitioners or pilots.

Besides the coating system, thin film vacuum coating is used to provide the same finish.  You can imagine the process a lot like spray painting the wall of your house. The substrate is given an even coating from materials ejected through an extremely small nozzle. The chemicals are converted to gas via superheating well before hand. To protect the substrate, a vacuum sealed chamber is used because engineers can control temperature with greater precision.

How Magnets Help Coat Substrates

Some vacuum deposition systems utilize magnets, allowing for the same kind of application using different means. In this case, the nozzle mechanism that sputters is replaced by magnets pulling ions with opposite charges. These machines use pulses of magnetism to attract metals, which pull ions onto the substrate. Because ions with an opposing charge are repelled during this process, chemicals are smashed into the substrate to give it the coating desired. This process is preferred because of the low levels of radiation emitted.

Pros and Cons

Not all sputtering systems are useful in every situation. Some leave inconsistencies in the material, and are useful for certain applications. Ion-beam assisted deposition, for example, is best used for circuit boards that require precise conductivity between components.
Denton Vacuum, LLC specializes in machinery used in advanced manufacturing, including plasma assisted chemical vapor deposition.

Printing a Circuit Board

Written by: Denton Vacuum, LLC

Summary: Producing circuit boards at a massive scale involves advanced manufacturing processes.

Circuit boards are now a ubiquitous part of modern homes. They are in everything, from the microwaves that heat our food to the cell phones that help us connect with each other. Circuit boards have to be produced en masse in order to keep up with this demand, fueling the need for modern manufacturing that offer precision and speed. Ion beam deposition allows manufacturers to create intricate circuit boards that power all kinds of machinery in a fraction of the time it took the Silicon Valley to do originally. These improvements have not only created more efficient processes, they have lessened the costs of manufacturing.

Photolithography and Etching

A circuit begins with the substrate, or the board itself. Manufacturers design the kind of board they want on a computer, then they use photolithography to create an image of that design on the board itself. Ion beam etching is then used to deposit strict amounts of metals and other substances to the board at precise locations. This allows for more effective connections that can power a greater number of tasks.

One reason that ion beam is chosen over UHV sputter deposition is the amount of waste involved. UHV sputtering is best used when there is no precision required.


Circuit boards have become incredibly intricate as technology has progressed, and there are more connections required to divert power to the parts of a machine. Improvements in manufacturing have allowed for greater precision in the design and construction of circuit boards.

Baileigh Industrial Explains How Tube and Pipe Bending Works

There is no clear-cut way to bend a metal tube or pipe. In fact, there may be one method better suited to the type of bending you want to do. Especially if you are bending a piece of metal that is of a higher gauge. We’ve reached out to James Newberg of Baileigh Industrial for a breakdown of the various methods used to bend metal into a desired shape.


Ram Bending

Ram bending is basically direct force applied to the metal piece, which is held in place at its end points. If you can imagine the piston of a car engine punching into a piece of wiring, you have the basic concept for how ram bending works. It’s the cheapest form of bending, and the process is prone to warping. It’s common for the tube or pipe to become deformed during this process, especially if the tubing isn’t very thick.

James says that Ram style bending is used primarily in the shaping of electrical conduit and other wiring that has a lighter gauge. It’s not really suited to the kind of metal work you’d find on a metal gate or inside an automotive shop.

Rotary Draw Bending

Baileigh Industrial’s RDB-150, which stands for “Rotary Draw Bender,” has become one of the most commonly utilized tools for shaping metal. It was the first dual-hydraulic bender and it allows for a 180 degree bend in just one pass through. In rotary draw bending, the metal tubing is drawn through a stationary counter, which is cylindrical in shape. The resulting force gives the metal a clean bend with a smooth finish.

James recommends this kind of bending for ornamental iron work. Baileigh’s tools are helpful in the formation of car chassis and roll cages used in high performance racing. Although the automotive and architectural industries are major use cases for this technology, you can also find this machinery at work in engineering fields that rely on conduit bending too.

Mandrel Bending

Mandrel bending is a highly specialized form of bending that is conducted when trying to avoid any kind of deformation. The major difference between this and rotary bending is the mandrel inserted into the tube. This flexible piece bends with the pipe, helping to maintain its shape from the inside out. Used primarily in the manufacture of car and farm machinery, it is especially effective in situations where stainless steel or aluminum are used.
After talking with James, we learned there is no singularly correct way to bend metal. Often, various techniques are needed depending on what you plan to shape. When you’re fitting a custom metal piece onto your project, be sure that you are using machinery that can give you the type of finish you’re looking for.

How to Choose a Pressure Transmitter

Summary: Manufacturing requires pressure for a variety of uses, and transmitters help to accurately regulate the pressures within a pipeline.

Pressure is the ratio of force exerted over a particular area. As industry develops new ways to utilize pressure, new equipment is necessary to help distribute and measure this pressure. A pressure transmitter comes in varying sizes so you can always find one that suits your needs.


The first thing you should consider is what the hydraulic pressure transducer will be used for. The purpose of the gauge is to force precise amounts of liquids through the pipeline, and to help clarify which chemicals might be in circulation at a given moment. Pressure sensors typically come in twos, there is usually one at the tank to measure pressure there, and another measuring internal pressure in the pipe line. The two work in conjunction to accurately monitor how much of a chemical is needed in a given moment.


Mounting plays a role in the durability of the subsea pressure transducer. If you mount the sensor on its side, for instance, it will generate less heat over all. This maximizes cooling, which increases efficiency and shelf life of the unit. Sometimes, the unit is used in extreme heat. In these cases, it’s helpful to mount the sensor on a cooling tower to isolate the seal and maintain acceptable temperatures.

Final Thoughts

A pressure transmitter fills an important role in industries that have to work within unusual conditions. Able to function in deep cold or extreme heat, transmitters will last a long time if you mount them properly.