Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  View our profile on LinkedIn   Society of Vacuum Coaters
October 2015
In This Issue

Testing Inorganic and Organic Materials with a New Ion Source

From Advanced Materials and Processes, September 2015, pp: 30-32: 

"A common technique called depth profiling uses x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) to evaluate layered materials using ion etching. However, before testing can even begin, samples that arrive at the laboratory often need to be cleaned of contamination. Most XPS instruments include an ion gun that produces monatomic argon ions (AR+). This gun works particularly well for most inorganic materials, keeping the chemical structure intact as layers are removed by ion bombardment. However, other classes of materials, such as polymers, biomaterials, and even some metal oxides, can be damaged by interaction with the ion beam, changing the material's chemistry and distorting test data.

To enable cleaning or depth profiling of these types of materials, an ion source that sputters the sample surface using large, singly-charged gas clusters was developed. The new monatomic and gas cluster ion source (MAGCIS) from Thermo Scientific XPS instruments uses both AR+ and ARn+ (n>1000) gas cluster sputtering, enabling surface cleaning and depth profiling of a growing class of advanced materials that include both hardened inorganic and softer organic materials."


Source: Advanced Materials and Processes, Volume 173, Issue 09, September 2015: (pp 30-32) 
Image: Wikimedia, Image 

Laying the Groundwork for Atomic Layer Etching

From Chemical and Engineering News, August 17, 2015 by Mitch Jacoby: 
"Researchers are busy developing a technique known as atomic layer etching (ALE). This chemistry-driven layer-by-layer film-removal procedure can be thought of as the reverse of atomic layer deposition (ALD), which is a commercially advanced layer-by-layer technique to build up films.

As with the deposition method, ALE is based on surface chemical reactions that affect one atomic layer of a material per reaction cycle. In both procedures, researchers expose the surface to a pulse of a reagent that bond selectively to just one type of surface functional group. To remove the chemically altered surface layer, researchers convert the molecules to a volatile form that desorbs from the surface. Some researchers carry out this desorption step by using mildly energetic species, such as those found in plasmas, to gently nudge the molecules in the altered layer to desorb from the surface. "

Image: Chemical and Engineering News

Deposition Equipment Market Witnesses a Year of Significant Changes

From Solid State Technologies, July 14, 2015, by Jeff Dorsch: 

"There are four main segments in the thin-layer deposition equipment market - atomic layer deposition, chemical vapor deposition, epitaxy, and physical vapor deposition, also known as sputtering. Global Industry Analysts (GIA) forecasts the global deposition equipment market will hit $13.6 billion by 2020. Atomic layer deposition (ALD) will be the fastest growing segment, with a compound annual growth rate of 19.9 percent, the market research firm estimates.

Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) will be the second largest deposition segment through the end of this decade, followed by physical vapor deposition (PVD) and epitaxy, according to GIA. Japanese vendors, namely Hitachi Kokusai Electric/Kokusai Semiconductor Equipment and Tokyo Electron, dominate the worldwide CVD market, with significant market shares held by Applied Materials, ASM International, and Lam Research, the market research firm states. "


Source: Solid State Technologies, 
Image: Wikimedia / O. Usher (UCL MAPS), 

Brookhaven Lab Study Explores Nanoscale Structure of Thin Films

From Brookhaven National Laboratory, August 3, 2015, by Laura Mgrdichian: 

"The world's newest and brightest synchrotron light source-the National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II) at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory-has produced one of the first publications resulting from work done during the facility's science commissioning phase.

Published in the online edition of the International Union of Crystallography Journal (a recently launched journal of the International Union of Crystallography), the paper discusses a new way to apply a widely used local-structure analysis tool-known as atomic pair distribution function (PDF) analysis-to x-ray scattering data from thin films, quickly yielding high-quality information on the films' atomic structure. The work creates new avenues for studies of nanocrystalline thin films.

This work shows that NSLS-II-a DOE Office of Science User Facility with ultra-bright, ultra-concentrated x-ray beams-is already proving to be a game-changer in studies of thin films, which play a vital role in a large number of technologies, including computer chips and solar cells. "


Source: Brookhaven National Laboratory, 
Image: Brookhaven National Laboratory

A New Material for Transparent Electronics

From Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, August 2015: 

"The performance of solar cells, flat panel displays, and other electronics are limited by today's materials. A new material, created by modifying a transparent insulating oxide, replacing up to 25 percent of the lanthanum ions in the host material with strontium ions, offers considerable promise. The new perovskite film LSCO, with the formula SrxLa1-xCrO3, (x up to 0.25), conducts electricity more effectively than the unmodified oxide and yet retains much of the transparency to visible light exhibited by the pure material.

The researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory along with collaborators at Binghamton University in New York and the Paul Drude Institute in Berlin have demonstrated that crystalline LSCO films deposited on SrTiO3(001) by molecular beam epitaxy show figures of merit which are highly competitive with best p-type TCOs reported to date, and yet are more stable and structurally compatible with the workhorse materials of oxide electronics. "


Source: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, 
Image: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Scientists Achieve Major Breakthrough in Thin-Film Magnetism

From National University of Singapore, August 14, 2015: 

"Recent work by a team of scientists working in Singapore, The Netherlands, USA and Ireland has uncovered a new twist to the story of thin-film magnetism.

The team from the National University of Singapore (NUS) - Mr Li Changjian, a graduate student from the NUS Graduate School for Integrative Sciences and Engineering, Assistant Professor Ariando and Professor T Venky Venkatesan - led to the discovery of this new magnetic phenomenon by growing perfectly-crystalline atomic layers of a manganite, an oxide of lanthanum and manganese {LaMnO3}, on a substrate crystal of nonmagnetic strontium titanate using a method - pulsed laser deposition - developed many years ago for high-temperature superconductors and multicomponent materials by Prof Venkatesan, who now heads the NUS Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Institute (NUSNNI).

The manganite is an antiferromagnet when it is atomically thin and shows no magnetism. The new discovery is that its magnetism is switched on abruptly when the number of Manganese atomic layers changes from 5 to 6 or more. "


Source: National University of Singapore, 
Image: National University of Singapore/Nanowerk article link, 

Rolling Out the Aluminum Carpet for Large-Scale Solar Cell Processing

From Materials Views, July 10, 2015 by John Uhlrich: 
"A team of researchers from the University of Newcastle and Curtin University has developed a gas-phase sputtering technique for depositing aluminum metal onto polymeric solar cells during large-scale roll-to-roll processing, which could be just the breakthrough needed for such solar cells to make an impact on the global energy scene.

All previous attempts at such sputter deposition had failed to produce useable solar cell devices because of the poor quality of the aluminum-polymer interface after deposition. The accepted hypothesis to this point was damage to the relatively soft polymer by the barrage of much heavier aluminum atoms impinging upon the surface. By comparing sputtered devices to ideal aluminum-polymer contacts fabricated using conventional thermal evaporation, they were able to show that the disordered interface had been falsely accused, actually causing no significant degradation in device properties.

By taking extreme efforts to purify the sputter gas before deposition, they achieved pure aluminum films forming near-ideal electrical contacts with the polymer and resulting in much improved solar cell device properties. "

Source: Materials Views, 
Image: Materials Views/ Adapted from 10.1002/ente.201402153

Turning Clothing into Information Displays

From imec (Belgium), September 9, 2015: 

"Researchers from Holst Centre (set up by TNO in The Netherlands and imec in Belgium), imec and CMST, imec's associated lab at Ghent University, Germany, have demonstrated the world's first stretchable and conformable thin-film transistor (TFT) driven LED display laminated into textiles. This paves the way to wearable displays in clothing providing users with feedback.

The conformable display is very thin and mechanically stretchable. A fine-grain version of the proven meander interconnect technology was developed by the CMST lab at Ghent University and Holst Centre to link standard (rigid) LEDs into a flexible and stretchable display. The LED displays are fabricated on a polyimide substrate and encapsulated in rubber, allowing the displays to be laminated in to textiles that can be washed. Importantly, the technology uses fabrication steps that are known to the manufacturing industry, enabling rapid industrialization. "


Source: imec, 
Image: imec

EPSRC Funding Boost to Aid Discovery of New Advanced Materials

From Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC, UK), August 25, 2015: 

"A new £6.65 million ($10.2 million US) grant for research aimed at accelerating the discovery and application of new advanced materials for the energy sector was announced by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). The grant, awarded to a team led by Professor Matthew Rosseinsky of the University of Liverpool, will support a program, Integration of Computation and Experiment for Accelerated Materials Discovery.

Professor Rosseinsky will head up an expert team at Liverpool and University College London that will work to tackle the challenge of designing and testing new materials at the atomic level and aims to keep the UK ahead in the global materials competition. Professor Rosseinsky said: 'The controlled arrangement of atoms and molecules to create function is a grand scientific challenge. With the approaches we will develop, we aim to address problems such as how to create materials for sustainable energy production and storage such as safer new battery technologies or the efficient capture and utilization of solar energy.' "


Source: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council: 
Image: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council

Rice, Penn State Open Center for 2-D Coatings

From Rice University, August 13, 2015 by Mike Williams: 

"A new center at Rice University and Pennsylvania State University will study, in collaboration with industry, the development of atom-thin two-dimensional coatings for a variety of uses.

The Center for Atomically Thin Multifunctional Coatings, aka ATOMIC, is one of more than 80 Industry/University Cooperative Research Program centers established by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to encourage scientific collaboration between academia and industry. It is the only NSF center dedicated to the development of advanced 2-D coatings.

The goal is to identify atom-thin materials that solve fundamental scientific and technological challenges in corrosion, oxidation, abrasion, friction, wear, energy conversion and storage. The partners expect to develop techniques for the large-scale synthesis and deposition of multifunctional coatings. "


Source: Rice University, 
Image: Rice University

Foldable Glass

From Nanowerk Spotlight, August 11, 2015 by Michael Berger: 

"Glass is notorious for its brittleness. Although industry has developed ultra-thin (∼0.1 mm), flexible glass (like Corning's Willow® Glass) that can be bent for applications liked curved TV and smartphone displays, fully foldable glass had not been demonstrated. Until now.

Dahl-Young Khang, an Associate Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Yonsei University and his group has demonstrated substrate platforms of glass and plastics, which can be reversibly and repeatedly foldable at pre designed location(s) without any mechanical failure or deterioration in device performances. "


Source: Nanowerk Spotlight, 
Image: Yonsei University

Narrowing the Gap between Synthetic and Natural Graphene

From Graphene Flagship, August 7, 2015 by Francis Sedgemore:
"Producing graphene in bulk is critical when it comes to the industrial exploitation of this exceptional two-dimensional material. To that end, Graphene Flagship researchers have developed a novel variant on the chemical vapor deposition process which yields high quality material in a scalable manner. This advance should significantly narrow the performance gap between synthetic and natural graphene.

Flagship-affiliated physicists from RWTH Aachen University and Forschungszentrum Jülich have together with colleagues in Japan devised a method for peeling graphene flakes from a CVD substrate with the help of intermolecular forces."

Image: copyright © 2015 Peter Winandy

Flexible Electronics on Rolled Glass

From SCHOTT Solutions, No. 1/2015 by Dr. Haike Frank: 

"The three technology companies SCHOTT, tesa and VON ARDENNE have joined to work as a consortium on an exciting project. KONFEKT is aimed at driving forward the development of ultra-thin glass-on-a-roll for use in applications, such as organic electronics, to produce future generations of OLED applications. The goal is to refine flexible glass through lamination with functional adhesive tapes and the application of specific functional layers. The hope is that this will result in a rolled-up substrate that can be easily processed, providing unique properties for many applications in roll form. Germany's Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is supporting this development for a period of three years with a total of 5.6 million euros (6.3 million USD). "

Source: SCHOTT Solutions, 

Surfaces Get Smooth or Bumpy On Demand

From MIT News Office, June 11, 2015, by David L. Chandler: 

"An MIT team has developed a way of making soft materials, using a 3-D printer, with surface textures that can then be modified at will to be perfectly smooth, or ridged or bumpy, or even to have complex patterns that could be used to guide fluids.

The process, developed using detailed computer simulations, involves a material that is composed of two different polymers with different degrees of stiffness: More rigid particles are embedded within a matrix of a more flexible polymer. When squeezed, the material's surface changes from smooth to a pattern determined by the spacing and shapes of the implanted harder particles; when released, it reverts back to the original form."


Source: MIT, 
Image: Felice Frankel

Layer Structure Enhances Light Absorption

From Photonics Spectra, June 2015 by Haihua Tan, et al: 

"A double absorbing layer based on amorphous silicon thin film is promising for solar cells because it considerably enhances the utilization of sunlight. Other potential applications can be found in the field of IR detection.

In this work, a double absorbing layer consisting of a-Si:H/μc-Si:H was prepared using the radio frequency (RF) PECVD technique and a nanosecond-laser-scanning method. The feasibility of the double absorbing layer scheme was analyzed using computer simulation software, and researchers compared the difference in absorption characteristics between the a-Si:H/μc-Si:H layer and the a-Si:H layer. "


Source: Photonics Spectra, 
Image: Photonics Spectra

Advertising Index


Advanced Energy March 2015
BellowsTech Jan 2015



Buerkert  Burkert April 2015
Ulvac April 2015

   Upcoming Conferences of Interest 



OSA: Frontiers in Optics, FiO

The Fairmont San Jose

San Jose, CA

October 18-22, 2015



Frontiers in Optics FiO 2015 the 99th OSA Annual Meeting encompasses the breadth of optical science and engineering and provides an atmosphere that fosters the exchange of information between those working on fundamental research and those looking for solutions to engineering problems. Special symposia and other major events further highlight major advances in many selected areas.

FiO 1: Optical Design, Fabrication and Instrumentation

FiO 2: Optical Sciences

FiO 3: Optics in Biology and Medicine

FiO 4: Fiber Optics and Optical Communication

FiO 5: Integrated Photonics

FiO 6: Quantum Electronics

FiO 7: Vision and Color


Laser Science

This serves as the 31st Annual Meeting of the American Physical Society (APS) of its Division of Laser Science (DLS) and provides an important forum for presenting the latest work on laser applications and development, spanning a broad range of topics in physics, biology and chemistry.


In collaboration with colleagues at OSA, DLS will provide thorough coverage of mutually interesting topics in a number of joint sessions. Session schedules are coordinated to encourage your intellectual wanderings among DLS, OSA and joint sessions.


Learn More and Register:


AVS 62nd International Symposium and Exhibition

San Jose Convention Center

San Jose, CA

October 18-23, 2015  


The AVS 62nd International Symposium and Exhibition scheduled for October 18-23, 2015, in San Jose, California will address cutting-edge issues associated with materials, processing, and interfaces in both the research and manufacturing communities. The weeklong Symposium fosters a multidisciplinary environment that cuts across traditional boundaries between disciplines, featuring papers from AVS technical divisions, technology groups, and focus topics on emerging technologies. The equipment exhibition is one of the largest in the world and provides an excellent opportunity to view the latest products and services offered by over 200 participating companies. More than 2,000 scientists and engineers gather from around the world to attend.

Learn More at: 

AIMCAL Web Coating & Handling Conference

Naples Grande Beach Resort

Naples, Florida

October 25-28, 2015  


AIMCAL and SPE have once again joined forces to deliver a standard in technical education and networking, and bring attendees unsurpassed opportunities. SPE's FlexPackCon will join the 2015 AIMCAL Web Coating and Handling Conference and will include FlexPackCon's strong focus on flexible packaging materials, processes and new technology combined with AIMCAL's technology focus on web coating and handling.

For more information, visit: 


9th Symposium on Vacuum-Based Science and Technology

Kolobrzeg, Poland

November, 17-19, 2015


The 9th Symposium on Vacuum Based Science and Technology is organized by the Faculty of Technology and Education, Koszalin University of Technology, and the Clausius Tower Society under auspices of the Polish Vacuum Society and the German Vacuum Society and in collaboration with the BalticNet PlasmaTec and the Society of Vacuum Coaters.


The mission of the Symposium is to provide a forum for presentation and exchange of expertise and research results in the field of vacuum and plasma science.


Symposium topics

  • Plasma physics and techniques
  • Vacuum science, techniques and trends
  • Protective coatings and thin films
  • Characterization of surfaces and thin films
  • Thin films for solar cells and sensors
  • Plasma based surface treatment technologies

New trends and concepts of plasma based deposition processes Authors of contributions accepted for oral presentation during the Symposium are encouraged to submit their manuscripts to VACUUM.


Featuring the SVC Tutorial Course: 

Monday, Novermber 16, 2015 * 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
C-338 Application of Reactive Sputtering, by Ralf Bandorf and Holger Gerdes, Fraunhofer Institute for Surface Engneering and Thin Films IST, Braunschweig, Germany


Register by October 13, 2015


Manufacturers and sales companies offering vacuum equipment, measurement and control systems as well as components for vacuum based science and technology are invited to offer their products and promotion materials during the Industry Exhibition. 

Visit the Conference Web Page to learn more: 

Printed Electronics USA
November 18-19, 2015
Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA
The only event focused on the commercialization of printed, organic and flexible electronics. Meet customers, do business.

Our Mission
  • Focus on end-user needs and sector requirements: case studies, requirements, opportunities
  • Clarify the latest technology and product developments and their roadmaps: capabilities, costs, plans
  • Clear market insight and sector appraisal: profitability, market sizing
  • Network with large numbers of end-users/ adopters
Full coverage of related markets through relevant co-located events


2015 MRS Fall Meeting & Exhibit
November 29-December 4, 2015
Hynes Convention Center
Boston, Massachusetts USA 

The 2015 Materials Research Society Fall Meeting & Exhibit features many new and emerging areas of materials research as well as an exciting mix of well-established and popular topics, including:



  • Biomaterials and Soft Materials
  • Nanomaterials and Synthesis
  • Mechanical Behavior and Failure of Materials
  • Electronics and Photonics
  • Energy and Sustainability
  • Theory, Characterization and Modeling
With 55 technical symposia, more than 6000 oral and poster presentations, an exhibition featuring over 250 international exhibitors from all sectors of the global materials science and engineering communities, and many special events, the 2015 MRS Fall Meeting & Exhibit offers attendees a wide-range of knowledge-building opportunities.

For the most up-to-date information on the 2015 MRS Fall Meeting, visit regularly.

Do You Have an Interesting Article to Share?

Interested in sharing the latest news in vacuum coating technology?  Forward us a link to an article you want to share with the rest of the SVC readership to  Purchase advertising space in this newsletter by contacting SVC at 

Society of Vacuum Coaters 
71 Pinon Hill Place NE 
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87122