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Enhance Your Sputter Deposition Yield with the Materion Approach

Major users of sputter deposition include equipment manufacturers across many markets: semiconductor, data storage, wireless, optical, hybrid/microelectronics and performance films. The industry goal is to improve sputter processing time, maximize the deposition yield and produce quality end products. Materion addresses each of those objectives with advanced materials solutions.

The Problem

The key challenge in deposition is that only 10-35% of a planar target is utilized in a sputtering environment. That leaves 65-90% of the target unused that will require either recycling or possibly scrapping - both which reduce processing time.

The Solution

Materion has several smarter solutions to enhance target utilization.  One of these is installing shunts on the backside of suitable candidate targets to open up erosion zones. This can realize upwards of 10-30% greater utilization of the target.  The process involves inserting a ferromagnetic shim on the backside of the target which improves the performance of the magnets in the magnetron assembly.  This further expands the erosion zone of the target material and reduces trenching in the erosion zone.  Additionally, shunting helps to stabilize power parameters within the performance cycle of the target. 

Another approach is our use of unique and advanced machining capabilities, including a coordinate measuring machine (CMM), to develop an erosion profile based on current target utilization. From this profile, we can design enhancements of the target that place additional material where the deeper erosion zones exist, and reduce material in areas that never get sputtered. This innovation heightens performance, raises the utilization rate and lowers your raw material input costs.

Other factors that impact performance, yield and quality are the physical attributes of targets.  Materion takes the following criteria into account during target development: 

• Grain size - One characteristic that can impact the quality of coating during deposition is grain size.  We use our patented VCTTM (Vibration Casting Technology) to produce consistent small grain sizes that ensure uniform coating and reduce spitting. 

• Target composition - Another important factor is the chemistry of the targets. Materion’s targets meet or exceed specifications for chemical composition. 

• Thermal/mechanical processes – In order to ensure the target material itself provides uniform characteristics, we use state-of-the-art thermal and mechanical technologies and processes to produce it.

The Materion Advantage

We have been a leading manufacturer of precious and non-precious metal sputtering targets and related services such as target backing plates, complete bonding service, and target recycling & refining services for decades. Our cost-efficient solutions can help you achieve the goal of increased sputter yield, reduced processing time, and superior end products. For more information, contact us.