Portland Nanotech provides the following services in thin film technology (which is often also referred to by one of the many names associated with a subset of thin film technology: MEMS, thin film hybrids, coating technology, microelectronics, atomic layer deposition and carbon nanotubes).
Trouble shooting existing unit processes
Integrating unit processes into a complete fabrication process
Training and education
Equipment specification and selection
Developing new processes
Modifying equipment or processes to obtain a different result
Troubleshooting existing unit processes:
Often, the underlying reason a thin film process is not yielding optimal results is not readily apparent. Because Portland Nanotech has over forty years experience in thin films, we can often analyze a process and help get it back on track, either through modifications to the equipment, the process parameters, or the method of implementation.
Integrating unit processes into a complete fabrication process:
Creating a product using thin film technology can require a process with hundreds of steps. Often, a small detail like choosing the wrong temperature for a heat treatment near the beginning of the sequence can cause the entire process to have a sub-optimal yield. Improving yield using sound, analytical, designed experiments, coupled with an in-depth knowledge of thin film processing makes Portland Nanotech stand out as a source of help for yield improvement.
Training and education:
The major deposition methods used in thin film technology are sputtering, evaporation, electroplating, chemical vapor deposition, plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition, metal organic chemical vapor deposition, ion implantation and molecular beam epitaxy. Ancillary processes include plasma etching, reactive ion etching, photolithography, diffusion, spin and spray coating, screen printing, heat treating and chemical etching. One way to think of these is as separate tools in a machine shop. They can be used separately or in concert to produce an almost infinite variety of products. There is a lot of science associated with each type of process. If your staff lacks formal training in an area, Portland Nanotech can provide custom seminars, short courses or in-service modules on any of these topics. Please contact us.
Equipment specification and selection:
Thin film tools cost anywhere from thirty thousand to several million dollars. To insure you get the tool you need, use the services of Portland Nanotech to develop the specifications, help you make build, buy, new vs. used decisions. We are up-to-date in what’s available and where to get it.
Developing new processes:
If you don’t have the capability to develop the process you need, Portland Nanotech can help in several ways. We can help you obtain the capability or help you find a suitable and qualified outside vendor and work with them to develop your process. Portland Nanotech can also develop the facility and process on your behalf and then operate the facility for you. This choice is often made to reduce the transference of trade secrets or competitive advantage to non-stakeholders.
Modifying equipment or processes to obtain a different result:
Often, because of Moore’s Law, and other obsolesce mechanisms, your expensive tool just became obsolete. Portland Nanotech can work with you to find new uses for the tool that fit within your business plan and make it so you won’t have to replace it with something else quite so soon. Also, we can help you find a buyer if tool modification or refitting is not a viable option.
Thin Film Technology is the study of a method of creating something by building it “one atom at a time”. This is contrasted with other methods of creating something like casting, machining, or painting (for example) where the material being formed is handled as a liquid or solid; not as individual atoms molecules or ions. Thin films do not necessarily have to be thin, although most of the practical thin films are less than a few microns thick. Portland Nanotech personnel have developed materials and products using thin film technology that are up to several inches thick. Let the Portland Nanotech team brainstorm your idea and help you determine the best way to utilize thin film technology to further your goals. Portland Nanotech is expert at selecting the correct tools and sequence to create a wide variety of products. We can help you get what you need because we not only understand the science; we also understand the practical application of each of these techniques and can apply them in innovative ways to obtain a particular, desired objective that often has never been accomplished before.
Contact Mike Bayne and his associates at Portland Nanotech Consultants LLC for expert, timely, cost effective help. Portland Nanotech serves
- the greater Portland - Vancouver area (Aloha, Battleground, Beaverton, Camas, Forest Grove, Gresham, Hillsboro, Lake Oswego, Oregon City, Portland, Sherwood, Tigard, Tualatin, Vancouver, Washougal and West Linn),
- the greater Seattle – Tacoma area (Auburn, Bellevue, Bothell, Burien, Everett, Federal Way, Kent, Kirkland, Puyallup, Tacoma, Redmond, Renton, Seattle and Snoqualmie),
- the Tri-cities (Kennewick, Pasco and Richland) and
- the greater Phoenix area (Chandler, Gilbert, Paradise Valley, Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe).