An Integral Vacuum Chamber Stage Concept Reduces the Size of Vacuum Chambers
from the Micro Magazine Product Technology News – Product Extra! section
The concept, from New Way Air Bearings, shrinks vacuum chamber size to little more than the volume of a semiconductor wafer, decreasing the capital and operating costs of vacuum equipment while improving vacuum system performance, the structural loop, and the metrology system. The vacuum chamber stage concept is based on porous-media technology. Unlike conventional orifice air bearings, the porous-media method controls the airflow across the entire bearing surface through millions of holes in the material. The consistent air-pressure distribution that results from the system provides excellent performance. The stage employs a moving vacuum preloaded air bearing with differentially pumped vacuum grooves. This configuration achieves levels of vacuum that are suitable for advanced patterning applications while facilitating ultra-precise positioning.