Rethinking of sputtering process – partial coating technology
Coatings are an emerging technology for the fast-growing glass market. Various thin film deposition technologies have been used for decades in glass processing industry to improve the properties of glass or to add new functionalities.
Volframi rethought the process to enable an easier, cheaper and more feasible method to process partial coatings on large substrates, which in turn allows various new innovative products for the smart glass market in the construction, transportation, and power generation industries.
In the new coating method, the vacuum chamber size does not depend on the size of substrates, i.e. a small chamber can be used to create targeted thin film coatings on very large substrates. The deposition process itself is based on the well-known PVD processes like magnetron sputtering. The coatings can be created on a substrate without coating the entire surface, which is very advantageous when creating mechatronic features, such as control switches on a large glass pane. There are no limitations on the size of the pane and the same tool is suitable for all pane sizes. The new method reduces the total process time and target material usage and also minimizes process steps. Furthermore, the tool footprint is small. The new partial coating method makes coating of small areas more feasible by reducing investment and processing costs. The benefits mentioned above tackle the biggest barriers for the use of sputtering process in mechatronics of smart glass products.
Please, check out the video of the targeted glass processing.
Video by Videotiiviste Oy www.videotiiviste.fi
This text has been published in part in the context of the Glass Performance Day 2021.
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