What is the Proper Way to Handle Tube Targets?

Target Tube

Process Materials carries exceptionally high standards on all products.  To assist our customers with proper handling of target tubes, we recommend the following:

Target storage:

  • Keep a new sputtering target in its original packaging until it is used
  • If a used target needs to be stored again, it must be re-wrapped in protective paper, foil, or foam
  • The target must be stored in its original crate (supported on both ends and in the middle) and placed in dry and dust-free environment

Target Handling:

  • Never touch a sputter target surface with bare hands. Targets must be handled with plastic gloves to avoid contamination of the target surface and subsequent problems during sputtering
  • Before lifting with a crane or handling in any way, the sputtering target must be wrapped in protective paper and a layer of foam
  • The target surface must be kept clean at all times and free of dust, water, and grease

Precautions Under Vacuum:

  • When the sputter target is mounted and operation in a substantially horizontal position in the coater, it is preferred to engage cooling water to the target and sustain target rotation to prevent sagging or deformation of the tube
  • When a heating source is applied in the coater, it is necessary to engage cooling water to the target and sustain target rotation before the heaters are being activated.  This will prevent non-uniform thermal loading
  • Only after switch-off of the heaters and sufficient time to allow cooling of the system, rotation of the target may be stopped and the cooling water valve of the target may be closed

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