DE102013219213A1 - Process chamber for a chemical reaction coating process and method for coating an optical object by means of a chemical reaction coating process - Google Patents

Process chamber for a chemical reaction coating process and method for coating an optical object by means of a chemical reaction coating process

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Publication number
DE102013219213A1
DE102013219213A1 DE201310219213 DE102013219213A DE102013219213A1 DE 102013219213 A1 DE102013219213 A1 DE 102013219213A1 DE 201310219213 DE201310219213 DE 201310219213 DE 102013219213 A DE102013219213 A DE 102013219213A DE 102013219213 A1 DE102013219213 A1 DE 102013219213A1
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Germany
Prior art keywords
process
process chamber
chamber element
chamber
coated
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Withdrawn
Application number
DE201310219213
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German (de)
Inventor
Frank Vollkommer
Klaus-Dieter Bauer
Jürgen Bauer
Philipp Erhard
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Osram GmbH
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Osram GmbH
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Publication date
Application filed by Osram GmbH filed Critical Osram GmbH
Priority to DE201310219213 priority Critical patent/DE102013219213A1/en
Publication of DE102013219213A1 publication Critical patent/DE102013219213A1/en
Application status is Withdrawn legal-status Critical

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    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C23COATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; CHEMICAL SURFACE TREATMENT; DIFFUSION TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL; INHIBITING CORROSION OF METALLIC MATERIAL OR INCRUSTATION IN GENERAL
    • C23CCOATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; SURFACE TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL BY DIFFUSION INTO THE SURFACE, BY CHEMICAL CONVERSION OR SUBSTITUTION; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL
    • C23C16/00Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes
    • C23C16/44Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes characterised by the method of coating
    • C23C16/458Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes characterised by the method of coating characterised by the method used for supporting substrates in the reaction chamber
    • C23C16/4581Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes characterised by the method of coating characterised by the method used for supporting substrates in the reaction chamber characterised by material of construction or surface finish of the means for supporting the substrate
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C23COATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; CHEMICAL SURFACE TREATMENT; DIFFUSION TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL; INHIBITING CORROSION OF METALLIC MATERIAL OR INCRUSTATION IN GENERAL
    • C23CCOATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; SURFACE TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL BY DIFFUSION INTO THE SURFACE, BY CHEMICAL CONVERSION OR SUBSTITUTION; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL
    • C23C16/00Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes
    • C23C16/04Coating on selected surface areas, e.g. using masks
    • C23C16/045Coating cavities or hollow spaces, e.g. interior of tubes; Infiltration of porous substrates
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C23COATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; CHEMICAL SURFACE TREATMENT; DIFFUSION TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL; INHIBITING CORROSION OF METALLIC MATERIAL OR INCRUSTATION IN GENERAL
    • C23CCOATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; SURFACE TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL BY DIFFUSION INTO THE SURFACE, BY CHEMICAL CONVERSION OR SUBSTITUTION; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL
    • C23C16/00Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes
    • C23C16/22Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes characterised by the deposition of inorganic material, other than metallic material
    • C23C16/30Deposition of compounds, mixtures or solid solutions, e.g. borides, carbides, nitrides
    • C23C16/40Oxides
    • C23C16/403Oxides of aluminium, magnesium or beryllium
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C23COATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; CHEMICAL SURFACE TREATMENT; DIFFUSION TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL; INHIBITING CORROSION OF METALLIC MATERIAL OR INCRUSTATION IN GENERAL
    • C23CCOATING METALLIC MATERIAL; COATING MATERIAL WITH METALLIC MATERIAL; SURFACE TREATMENT OF METALLIC MATERIAL BY DIFFUSION INTO THE SURFACE, BY CHEMICAL CONVERSION OR SUBSTITUTION; COATING BY VACUUM EVAPORATION, BY SPUTTERING, BY ION IMPLANTATION OR BY CHEMICAL VAPOUR DEPOSITION, IN GENERAL
    • C23C16/00Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes
    • C23C16/44Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes characterised by the method of coating
    • C23C16/455Chemical coating by decomposition of gaseous compounds, without leaving reaction products of surface material in the coating, i.e. chemical vapour deposition [CVD] processes characterised by the method of coating characterised by the method used for introducing gases into reaction chamber or for modifying gas flows in reaction chamber
    • C23C16/45523Pulsed gas flow or change of composition over time
    • C23C16/45525Atomic layer deposition [ALD]
    • C23C16/45544Atomic layer deposition [ALD] characterized by the apparatus

Abstract

The invention relates to a process chamber (10) for a chemical reaction coating process for coating at least one optical object (22) to be coated. The process chamber (10) comprises a chamber wall (18) which at least partially encloses a process space (16), at least one through-opening (26; 34), around at least one precursor (28a; 28b) and / or a purge gas (29). through the passage opening (26, 34). The first process chamber element (12; ) can be arranged on the at least one first process chamber element (12; 14) such that the at least one optical object (22) itself forms a second part of the chamber wall (18).

Description

  • Technical area
  • The invention is based on a process chamber for a chemical reaction coating process according to the preamble of patent claim 1 and a method for coating an optical object to be coated by means of a chemical reaction coating process according to the preamble of patent claim 14.
  • State of the art
  • To increase the efficiency of luminaires, the use of reflectors with highly reflective coatings of e.g. Silver thought. Disadvantage of these highly reflective layers, however, is their instability in ambient air, so that without an additional protective layer, the reflectance drops rapidly over time. Since these protective layers are allowed to absorb only very little but at the same time should have a very dense barrier layer to the environment and also a very high uniformity even with larger aspect ratios of the reflectors, so-called chemical reaction coatings such as e.g. CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) coatings or ALD (Atomic Layer Deposition) coatings are used. The state of the art essentially comprises so-called batch processes for production-relevant quantities. Here, a large number of parts to be coated are placed in a process chamber. In the case of the ALD coating, the process chamber is then flooded with the corresponding precursors for each atomic coating layer and, in the meantime, purged / flooded, so that the corresponding precursors only meet as adsorbates on the coating surface. This is particularly important because a collision in the gas phase can lead to particles and coating defects. The disadvantage of these batch processes is the very high expenditure of time, the high cost of materials and the often limited reliability, especially in unfavorable flow conditions and dead spaces. But also CVD processes without constantly alternating gas composition are used.
  • Presentation of the invention
  • The object of the present invention is to provide a process chamber and a method for coating at least one optical object to be coated, by means of which a coating of optical objects is possible in the most efficient way possible.
  • This object is achieved by a process chamber having the features of patent claim 1 and a method having the features of claim 14. Particularly advantageous embodiments can be found in the dependent claims.
  • The process chamber according to the invention for a chemical reaction coating process for coating at least one optical object to be coated comprises a chamber wall which at least partially encloses a process space. Furthermore, the process chamber comprises at least one passage opening, which is designed to carry out at least one precursor and / or a purge gas through the passage opening. Furthermore, the process chamber has at least one first process chamber element, which provides a first part of the chamber wall. In this case, the at least one first process chamber element is designed such that the at least one optical object to be coated can be arranged at least on at least one first process chamber element such that the at least one optical object itself forms a second part of the chamber wall.
  • An optical object may preferably be understood to be a reflector, but also lenses, dichroic mirrors, interference filters, etc. Especially in the case of optical objects, ALD methods are used, since in the case of optical objects, if a coating of these is required, a high degree of uniformity is required the coatings is relevant for ensuring good optical properties.
  • Therefore, it is furthermore an advantageous embodiment of the invention if the process chamber is designed for a chemical reaction coating process designed as an atomic layer deposition process. However, the advantages and refinements recited below apply not only to ALD processes but also to other chemical reaction coating processes, e.g. CVD method.
  • By forming the first process chamber element such that the at least one optical object can be arranged on the process chamber element such that it itself forms part of the chamber wall, it is possible in a particularly advantageous manner to reduce dead spaces in the process chamber and even completely avoid them. This reduction or avoidance of the dead spaces, ie unused process volume, thus also enables a volume reduction of the process volume. The reduced volume and the avoidance of dead spaces in turn allow a much faster, reliable and therefore more effective Coating of optical objects. In particular, the rinsing phases can thereby be made significantly shorter, in order to ensure that there are no precursor residues in the process space which cause particle formation in the gas phase. In addition, a reduced volume and less purge gas and a smaller amount of a respective Prekursors needed, which can continue to save costs. Especially with Al 2 O 3 coatings, which are common for reflector coatings, TMA (trimethylaluminum) is used as a precursor, which is comparatively expensive. Furthermore, it is inevitable in such processes that the process chamber inner walls are also coated. By using the optical objects as part of the chamber wall itself, this can also be saved in addition to precursors and thus costs. By a reduced volume, in particular with a constant number of objects to be coated, also significantly more favorable flow conditions of the gases / gas mixtures, ie the purge gas, the precursors and the mixture of purge gas and a respective precursor can be created.
  • The passage opening for the passage of the at least one precursor and / or the purge gas may be formed as an inlet opening to introduce the at least one precursor and / or the purge gas in the process chamber, and / or be designed as an output port for executing the at least one Prekursors and / or the purge gas. In this case, the passage opening may also be formed simultaneously as an inlet and outlet opening, e.g. to execute the at least one precursor and / or the purge gas from the process chamber and at the same time introduce it into a further process chamber. In addition, the process chamber may be configured so that when the at least one optical element is arranged on the first process chamber element, the process space is enclosed by the first process chamber element and the at least one optical element. However, the process chamber may also have further process chamber elements, so that when the at least one optical element is arranged on the first process chamber element, the process space enclosed by the first and the further process chamber elements, and in particular also by the at least one optical element, is enclosed. Furthermore, the process chamber can be designed to be openable in order to introduce the at least one optical element into the process chamber. However, the process chamber can also be formed with at least one opening in order to arrange the at least one optical element thereon so that it forms the second part of the chamber wall.
  • In an advantageous embodiment of the invention, the first process chamber element has a first chamber element surface bounding at least part of the process space, wherein at least a region of the first chamber element surface having a three-dimensional structure is formed corresponding to a three-dimensional object surface of the optical object to be coated.
  • By forming the first chamber element surface with a three-dimensional structure, it can be adapted to an object to be coated and in particular its object surface, so that a further reduction of the total volume of the process space can be effected. In addition, this adjustment can also avoid dead spaces and the flow behavior can be improved.
  • In a further advantageous embodiment of the invention, the first chamber element surface on a plurality of areas, each having a three-dimensional structure corresponding to three-dimensional object surfaces of a plurality of to be coated optical objects.
  • This is particularly advantageous when large numbers of optical objects are to be coated. The arrangement may, for example, be grid-shaped, e.g. with a plurality of rows and columns with regions having a three-dimensional structure of the first chamber element surface. In this case, it is possible to form the three-dimensional structures identically, which makes it possible to coat a plurality of identically designed optical objects. However, the three-dimensional structures can also be designed differently, so as to coat differently formed optical objects.
  • In a further advantageous embodiment of the invention, the three-dimensional structure of the at least one region of the first chamber element surface is formed corresponding to a three-dimensional object surface of an optical object to be coated such that the optical object to be coated can be introduced into the process chamber such that at least a portion of the object surface the optical object to be coated bears in a form-fitting manner against the first chamber element surface in at least one region of the first chamber element surface of the first process chamber element.
  • Thus, the optical object to be coated forms a part of the inner wall even with a part of its object surface, in particular with the part of its surface to be coated. Boundary surface of the process space. The object to be coated is, as it were, integrated into the chamber wall in the process space or at least part of the inner boundary surface of the process space can be advantageously covered with objects to be coated. Even with this configuration, no dead spaces can arise between the objects and a chamber wall surface or the first chamber element surface, which advantageously makes it possible to carry out a coating cycle much more quickly. Furthermore, the embedding of the process chamber with optical objects and their replacement is facilitated by this embedding possibility of the optical objects in the first process chamber element. This is particularly advantageous, especially in the case of reflectors, as optical objects to be coated. These are usually relatively thin-walled with a reflective side, which is to be coated, and formed a non-reflective or non-coated side, therefore claim themselves not much volume and advantageously allow embedding in the chamber wall by the positive engagement of not too coating side on the first chamber element surface. The process space can thus be designed, for example, as a flow-through pipe designed to correspond to the reflector geometry, the reflectors resting against the pipe walls themselves or forming part of them themselves.
  • Furthermore, the first process chamber element can be formed at least in part from such a first, in particular elastically reversibly deformable material, that the first process chamber element in an arrangement of an optical object to be coated in at least a portion of the first chamber element surface to a form-fitting contact with a part of the object surface of the optical object to be coated is deformable.
  • Such a design of the first process chamber element can ensure that precursors can not unintentionally penetrate between the first chamber element surface and the adjacent part of the object surface. This embodiment also makes a coating process with regard to unwanted particle formation in the gas phase more reliable, which in turn makes it possible to provide a faster implementation of the coating method. Furthermore, the objects can be pressed or pressed into the correspondingly formed structures of the first chamber element surface by the elastically deformable formation of the first process chamber element, whereby at the same time a stable support of the objects can be provided, so that the objects do not slip during the coating process or can move elsewhere. The advantageous fit is thus ensured for the duration of the entire coating process.
  • In a further advantageous embodiment of the invention, the process chamber has a second process chamber element that can be arranged on the first process chamber element in such a way that the first process chamber element and the second process chamber element enclose the process space in an arrangement with one another.
  • Advantageously, the process space can be enclosed by only two separately formed components, namely the first and the second process chamber element. In this case, sealing elements, in particular between the contact surfaces of the two process chamber elements, may be provided for sealing the process space. This represents a particularly simple and cost-effective design of the process chamber.
  • In this case, the second process chamber element preferably provides a third part of the chamber wall and has a second chamber element surface, wherein at least a portion of the second chamber element surface is formed with a three-dimensional structure. The surface of the second chamber element can thus advantageously also be used to form-fit or embed optical objects of corresponding geometry thereon or it can also serve as a filler, for example, in order to further minimize the volume of the process space. Both result in the fact that the total volume of the process space can be further reduced or better used, which allows an even more efficient and faster coating of the objects to be coated.
  • For example, the second process chamber element may be formed as a further first process chamber element, in particular such that the structure of the second chamber element surface of the second process chamber element formed as a further first process chamber element is identical to the structure of the first chamber element surface of the first process chamber element.
  • Thus, a plurality, in particular identically formed, optical objects can be arranged both on the first and on the second chamber element surface, whereby the process space can be used effectively. Thus, for example, reflectors can also be embedded in the second chamber element so that their object surfaces to be coated simultaneously form part of the boundary surface of the process space. This possibility of particularly effective lining of the interior surface of the process room also has, as already mentioned, another advantage. In the prior art, the boundary surfaces of the process space given by the process space walls are also coated, which represents an unnecessary consumption of precursors. Here it is accomplished that the boundary surface of the process space, which is unnecessarily co-coated, can be kept extremely small. Thus, expensive precursors can be saved again and thus achieve a cost advantage.
  • In one embodiment of the invention, the three-dimensional structure of the second chamber element surface is formed corresponding to the three-dimensional structure of the first chamber element surface, that when the first process chamber element is arranged on the second process chamber element, a gap is formed between the first chamber element surface and the second chamber element surface with a maximum predetermined gap width.
  • In particular, the gap width across the chamber element surfaces should not vary greatly, ie have a variation smaller than or equal to a predetermined value. This is particularly advantageous in the case of a coating of reflectors as optical objects, since reflectors are usually also thin-walled with an almost constant wall thickness, and thus, with an arrangement of such a reflector on the first chamber element surface, a gap between the reflector surface to be coated and the second chamber element surface results in almost constant gap width. This advantageously improves the flow properties of the process space when flowing through the gases / gas mixtures. The formation of the gap should extend at least over a contiguous region of the first chamber element surface, which has the regions with the three-dimensional structure of the first chamber element surface.
  • The second chamber member may be used in this embodiment e.g. serve as a packing and, by forming the three-dimensional structure corresponding to the three-dimensional structure of the first chamber element surface, reduces the volume of the process space to a minimum, i. to only one gap through which the gas / gas mixture can flow through defined. In this case, gap widths between an optical object arranged on the first chamber element surface, in particular a reflector, and the second chamber element surface can be implemented in the millimeter range, in particular even in the micrometer range, for example between 200 m and 5 mm, in particular between 200 m and 1 mm. As a result of the enormous reduction in the volume of the process space made possible by this, the coating process can be designed very quickly and at the same time reliably, i. without having to accept unwanted unevenness in the coating. In the case of an arrangement of the at least one optical object on the first process chamber element such that the optical object itself forms a part of the chamber wall, without being embedded in a form-fitting manner in the first process chamber element, and in particular also without the need for providing a second process chamber element, can also the first process chamber element may be formed in the same way as a filler, as described for the second process chamber element.
  • At the same time, a volume reduction also means a tremendous simplification in the configuration or design of the process chamber itself. For example, the lower process volume can significantly reduce the heating effort, in particular because the smaller process volume also requires a smaller amount of purge gases and thus less mass heat is.
  • In this case, the second process chamber element is preferably formed from a second material different from the first material, in particular a non-elastic and / or non-deformable material. Thus, in the case of an embodiment of the second process chamber element, it can be made as rigid as possible, so that a defined gap with a very small gap width can be realized without running the risk of the gap width changing during the coating process and / or the gap closing and / or or obstructs or prevents the flow of the gas / gas mixture.
  • In an embodiment of the second process chamber element as a packing, the three-dimensional structure is preferably formed in at least one area of the second chamber element surface as a negative shape of the three-dimensional structure in at least one area of the first chamber element surface, in particular with a variable which has been changed by an extension factor. In this way, a defined gap between the reflector surface and the second chamber element surface can be realized in an advantageous manner, especially when coating reflectors and their arrangement on the first chamber element surface. The filler is adapted in this way particularly well to the geometry of the first chamber element surface and thus also to the geometry arranged thereon reflectors. This results in a multi-dimensional gap between the reflector surface and the filler. In principle, so the reflector and the filler to a complex tube, which flows through the precursors and the purge gas becomes. Due to the effective flow through the resulting gas space, reactions of the precursors in the gas phase can be effectively prevented. Also possibly generated particles are easily entrained in the gas stream and sucked, which effectively prevents accumulation, as can occur in batch reactors.
  • In a further embodiment of the invention, the first process chamber element has at least one inlet opening and / or outlet opening which opens into the first chamber element surface such that it is enclosed by the at least one area of the first chamber element surface.
  • Through this design, a targeted flow along the gas / gas mixture can be made possible on the object surface of the optical object to be coated. This design is particularly advantageous in reflectors as optical elements, since they are often formed with such a geometry that they enclose a light source with the reflective side. In a central region of the reflector, e.g. where usually the light source is arranged, or in a region from which the light source is turned away in its emission direction and thus is not used for reflection of light, a through hole may be provided in the reflectors. These can thus be arranged on the first chamber element surface in the area with the three-dimensional structure, so that the inlet opening opens directly into the passage opening in the reflectors and flows along the reflector surface. A particularly advantageous defined flow can be achieved in particular as a filler in combination with the formation of the second process chamber element. This allows the gas / gas mixture to be guided in a defined manner along the surfaces to be coated, which makes the process even faster.
  • Such process chamber elements, such as the first and / or the second process chamber element, can be provided in a manner corresponding to one or more optical objects to be coated, by first providing information about the geometric design of the at least one object to be coated and / or the first and / or. or second process chamber element is formed depending on the information provided with a geometric shape corresponding to the geometric configuration of the at least one object to be coated, for example such that at least part of the chamber element surface of the at least one first and / or second process chamber element is formed as a negative mold, possibly with a modified stretching factor, of at least part of an object surface of one side of the at least one object to be coated.
  • The information about the geometric shape of the object to be coated may be e.g. are provided as the first data, wherein from the first data second data for the geometric shape of the at least one first process chamber element are determined and the at least one first and / or second process chamber element is formed using the second data.
  • Particularly advantageous for such a design are methods such as e.g. Rapid prototyping, especially 3D printing, or other methods such. Injection molding and the like. In this case, the first and / or second process chamber element can be formed according to these methods both as a matrix element and as a filler.
  • In the method according to the invention for coating at least one optical object to be coated by means of a chemical reaction coating process, the at least one optical object to be coated is provided. Furthermore, a process chamber is provided with a chamber wall which at least partially encloses a process space, wherein the chamber wall has at least a first process chamber element which provides a first part of the chamber wall. Furthermore, the at least one object to be coated is at least partially introduced into the process space and thereafter the process space flows through at least one precursor and / or one purge gas. In this case, the at least one precursor and / or the purge gas for flowing through the process space is performed by at least one passage opening in the chamber wall of the process space. In this case, the optical object to be coated is arranged at least on the first process chamber element such that the optical object itself forms a second part of the chamber wall.
  • In a preferred embodiment of the method according to the invention, an atomic layer deposition process is carried out as a chemical reaction coating process, wherein the process space flows through the process space with at least one precursor and / or a purge gas alternately and spaced apart by a predeterminable time interval with at least two different precursors and continues to be In this case, at least during the predetermined time interval, the process space flows through a purge gas.
  • The features, feature combinations and their advantages mentioned for the process chamber according to the invention and its embodiments apply in the same way, as far as applicable, also for the method according to the invention and its embodiments. Furthermore, the subject features mentioned for the process chamber according to the invention and its embodiments enable the development of the method according to the invention by further method steps.
  • The inventive design of the process chamber can also be used for non-alternating gas flows. In this case, the chamber is used for so-called CVD coatings.
  • Further advantages, features and details of the invention will become apparent from the following description of preferred embodiments and from the drawings.
  • Brief description of the drawings
  • In the following, the invention will be explained in more detail with reference to exemplary embodiments. The figures show:
  • 1 a schematic representation of a process chamber in a cross section according to an embodiment of the invention;
  • 2 a schematic and diagrammatic representation of the process flow for coating at least one to be coated optical object by means of an atomic layer deposition process according to an embodiment of the invention;
  • 3 a schematic representation of a process chamber in a cross section with two formed as a matrix elements process chamber elements according to an embodiment of the invention;
  • 4 a schematic representation of a process chamber in a cross section with a packing according to an embodiment of the invention;
  • 5 a schematic representation of a process chamber in a cross section with a filling body and a cavity member according to an embodiment of the invention;
  • 6 a schematic representation of a process chamber in a cross section with a filler and two cavity elements according to an embodiment of the invention;
  • 7 a schematic representation of a process chamber in a cross section with arranged in series reflectors according to an embodiment of the invention; and
  • 8th a schematic representation of a process chamber in a cross section with recesses in a process chamber element for arranging planar reflectors in the recesses as part of the chamber wall according to an embodiment of the invention.
  • Preferred embodiment of the invention
  • 1 shows a schematic representation of a process chamber 10 for an atomic layer deposition process according to an embodiment of the invention. This has a first process chamber element, which as a matrix element 12 is formed, and a second process chamber element 14 to complete the process space 16 , The first and second process chamber elements each form part of the chamber wall 18 , The in the process room 16 arranged and in particular this limiting first chamber element surface 12a of the matrix element 12 has a three-dimensional structure that corresponds to a shape of a reflector 22 , in particular to a part of the three-dimensional reflector surface 22a is trained. In this example, there are two reflectors 22 shown, which in the two areas of the first chamber element surface 12a are arranged with the correspondingly formed structure. For sealing the process space 16 can still be a sealing element 24 , such as a rubber ring, be provided. The matrix element 12 can be formed from an elastically deformable material, in particular so that in an arrangement of the reflectors 22 on the matrix element 12 this a form-fitting contact with the adjoining reflector surfaces 22a can train. By embedding the reflectors 22 into the matrix element 12 form the reflectors 22 even a part of the chamber wall 18 or a part of the boundary surface of the process space 16 , so no gas between the at the matrix element 12 adjoining reflector surface 22a and the matrix surface 12a can get. As a result, dead spaces can be effectively avoided, which makes the ALD method significantly more reliable. As a result, the rinsing phases of the ALD process can be designed significantly shorter, which brings a huge time advantage. Furthermore, by adapting the geometry of the matrix element 12 to the reflectors to be coated 22 the total volume of the process space 16 reduced. This can, on the one hand, save on the precursors 28a . 28b be achieved and in turn be allowed to accelerate the coating process. Gas consumption is proportional to flowed through volume. The volume of the process room 16 the process chamber 10 can be reduced by avoiding dead spaces and flow-reducing zones compared to conventional process chambers, resulting in a cost savings through the reduced gas consumption.
  • The materials of the matrix element 12 and the second process chamber element 14 should be heat resistant, in particular at least up to a maximum process temperature of the ALD process, such as up to 200 ° C.
  • Furthermore, the process chamber 10 two entrance openings 26 on, which here in the matrix element 12 are arranged. These can, for example, as circular recesses or holes in the matrix element 12 be educated. These entrance openings 26 serve to supply the precursors 28a . 28b and the purge gas 29 in the process room 16 , The entrance openings 26 are to with wires 30a . 30b a piping system 30 coupled. The piping system 30 still has a Spülgaszuleitung 30c on and for each one precursor 28a . 28b a respective precursor line 30d , Here are the precursor lines 30d and the purge gas line 30c via a common crosspoint with the lines 30a and 30b coupled. The feeder of precursors 28a . 28b is doing through the two valves 32a and 32b , especially fast ALD valves, controlled. The entrance openings 26 are still in the matrix element 12 arranged them in an area of the matrix element surface 12a in the process room 16 lead to the three-dimensional structure for applying the reflectors 22 having. To the purge gas 29 and the precursors 28a . 28b in the process room 16 to bring in this example, have the reflectors 22 a recess at the mouth of the entrance openings 26 in the matrix element 12 on.
  • To discharge the precursors 28a . 28b or the purge gas 29 from the process room 16 is still an exit port 34 provided here in particular in the second process chamber element 14 is arranged. At this exit opening 34 is a discharge line 36 arranged. It can also be several discharge lines 36 and / or exit openings 34 be provided.
  • By this arrangement of the entrance openings 26 and exit openings 34 can be achieved that the reflector surface to be coated 22a from the precursors 28a . 28b and the purge gas 29 can be completely flowed around.
  • 2 shows a schematic and diagrammatic representation of the procedure for coating at least one optical object to be coated 22 by means of an atomic layer deposition process according to an embodiment of the invention. The ordinate of the diagram represents the flow rate Q and the abscissa indicates the time t in seconds. The flow rate Q of the purge gas 29 is constant, ie the purge gas 29 becomes the process room 16 supplied continuously and constantly and discharged therefrom. In general, the flow rate Q can also vary over time, but a time-constant flow rate Q is a technically particularly easy to implement variant. Meanwhile, the two precursors 28a . 28b supplied and discharged in an alternating, periodic and temporally spaced order, so that the illustrated course of the flow rates Q of the two precursors 28a . 28b results. Also shown is the flow rate Q of the gas mixture 40 that is from one of the precursors 28a . 28b , which is supplied in a respective time interval, and the purge gas 29 composed and otherwise only the purge gas 29 represents. As precursors 28a . 28b TMA and water are preferably used to produce an Al 2 O 3 coating, which is particularly suitable as a reflector protective layer. As purge gas 29 an inert gas, such as argon, or nitrogen is used.
  • In addition, the use of additional precursors is possible. For example, may be provided as an intermediate layer between the individual aluminum oxide layers, an organic layer, such as Alucon. Such a layer can be produced by means of TMA and ethylene glycol as precursors. Such an intermediate layer, in particular between a plurality of aluminum oxide layers, advantageously increases the flexibility of the overall coating. In particular, depending on which layer material is to be produced, a plurality of precursors known from the prior art.
  • As can be seen from the diagram, an ALD cycle in e.g. 3 seconds are performed, which is only possible by the invention. The time advantages over the previously known state of the art are enormous. If, for example, a process chamber according to the invention is constructed as a matrix of 10 by 10 reflectors and 100 ALD cycles are required to produce the coating of the reflectors, the 100 reflectors can be coated in a time of approximately 5 minutes. This represents a time period shorter by at least a factor of 60 than is possible in the prior art.
  • 3 shows a schematic representation of another embodiment variant of a process chamber 10 according to an embodiment of the invention. In this case, the process chamber points 10 again two chamber elements, here both now as matrix elements 12 are provided. Here is every matrix element 12 as already too 1 described trained. The process room 16 is due to the arrangement of the matrix elements 12 together from the two matrix elements 12 locked in. Again, this may be a sealing element 24 be provided for sealing the process space 16 , By this training can advantageously on the chamber element surfaces 12a both matrix elements 12 reflectors 22 In particular, so can almost the entire interior surface of the process space 16 with reflectors 22 be clad, and thereby an extremely high efficiency can be effected.
  • 4 shows a schematic representation of another training option a process chamber 10 according to a further embodiment of the invention. The formation of the matrix element 12 and also the piping system 30 corresponds here again to 1 already described training. Particularly advantageous in this embodiment is now that the second process chamber element 14 as filler 14 is trained. This therefore also has a surface structure which corresponds to the three-dimensional surface structure of the reflectors 22 is trained. Here is the filler 14 designed so that the process room 16 the arrangement is preferred only by a narrow gap 42 between the reflector surface to be coated 22a and the filler 14 is provided. Here is the filler 14 preferably formed of a non-elastic material, so that it is possible to provide a defined gap width, which does not change during the coating process. By a rigid as possible training of the packing 14 Thus gap widths can be realized which measure only a few millimeters or micrometers, eg 200 m to 1 mm. The process room 16 itself is thus through a gap 42 formed with three-dimensional structure. Through this training of the process chamber 10 with a filler 14 can the volume of the process space 16 additionally reduce again, so that this can even be reduced by a factor of 100 and more compared to conventional process chambers, resulting in a cost saving by the reduced gas consumption also by a factor of 100 with it.
  • 5 shows a schematic representation of a process chamber 10 that like in 4 is formed, but with an alternative training option of the piping system 30 , In this illustrated embodiment of the piping system 30 are no longer the precursor lines 30d with the purge gas line 30c merged at a common node, but the purge gas line 30c splits into two sub-lines, one each with a precursor line 30d is coupled, as seen in the flow direction directly behind the valves 32a . 32b , This training can prevent, for example, precursor residues in the precursor lines 30d behind the valves 32a . 32b form unintentionally in an unscheduled phase of the process in the process space 16 arrive or that cause the two precursors 28a . 28b already in the piping system 30 meet and then form particles. This implementation makes the respective precursor line 30d immediately after the valve 32a . 32b also by the purge gas 29 flows through, which thus a residue formation in the piping system 30 prevented.
  • Another difference in the illustrated embodiment is still that a cavity element 44 on an outside of the matrix element 12 ie outside the process space 16 , is arranged so that all in the matrix element 12 located entrance openings 26 through the cavity of the cavity member 44 are connected. This has the advantage that it does not work with every input port 26 a separate supply line 30a . 30b (see. 1 . 3 and 4 ) must be coupled. But only one supply line can be used, which is the purge gas 29 and the precursors 28a . 28b in their predetermined order the cavity of the cavity element 44 supplies. Through the cavity element 44 the supplied gas / gas mixture is the individual inlet openings 26 in the matrix element 12 fed.
  • 6 shows a schematic representation of a process chamber 10 according to a further embodiment of the invention. The process chamber 10 is here again as in 5 formed, but now with the difference that a just described cavity element 44 now also on the outside of the packing 14 ie outside the process space 16 , is arranged so that now all the output openings 34 of the packing 14 through the cavity of the cavity member 44 connected to each other. Thus, no longer have several discharge lines 36 each individually with an outlet opening 34 but it can only be a single discharge line 34 with the cavity element 44 be coupled, via which the gas / gas mixture is discharged. This training with cavity elements 44 simplifies the construction and connection of the process chamber 10 to the piping system 30 or the discharge lines 36 enormous, especially in very large process chambers 10 , which for a hundred or more reflectors 22 are formed.
  • The here in 1 . 3 . 4 . 5 and 6 Process chamber versions shown in cross-section are exemplary only for two reflectors 22 shown. However, it is preferred that such process chambers 10 for significantly larger numbers of reflectors 22 train. For this purpose, it can be provided, for example, the chamber element surface 12a of the matrix element 12 form with a grid-like arrangement of three-dimensional structures, so that several reflectors 22 in rows and columns on the chamber element surface 12a can be arranged. The packing 14 can then also be formed with a corresponding grid-like surface structure. Alternatively or additionally, it can also be provided, a large process chamber arrangement of a plurality of modular zusammenfügbaren process chambers 10 build. For this purpose, for example, several process chambers 10 be arranged side by side or one above the other. An arrangement possibility in the way that individual process chambers 10 In such a process chamber arrangement are arranged individually exchangeable would also be conceivable. This then has advantages especially in cleaning processes of the process chamber 10 , Because the packing 14 and not by optical objects 22 covered chamber element surfaces 12a be coated during a coating process, the process chamber elements 12 . 14 In order to be able to continue to use them in an advantageous manner, be subjected now and again to a cleaning process. By a modular structure of a process chamber arrangement, for example, individual process chambers 10 to be cleaned for cleaning against the cleaned, without affecting the manufacturing process of the reflectors 22 to interrupt for a long time.
  • Furthermore, the process chamber 10 be formed so that the reflector system arranged therein is flowed through in parallel or in series. A series arrangement is exemplary in 7 shown.
  • 7 shows a schematic representation of a process chamber 10 according to a further embodiment of the invention with a series arrangement of reflectors 22 , The illustrated reflectors 22 can thus on the process chamber element designed as a cover 14 be arranged that they themselves a part of the chamber wall 18 form, in particular without embedding in a matrix element 12 , The process rooms 16 in each case by a respective reflector 22 and the process chamber element formed as a cover 14 limited. The individual process spaces formed in this way can be used 16 be connected by pipes so that the gas / gas mixture the individual process spaces 16 flows through in series. Here are the outlet openings 34 the process chamber elements 14 at the same time the entrance openings 26 for the other process rooms 16 or coupled with input openings in the reflectors themselves.
  • Alternatively or additionally, it may be provided that the reflectors 22 in one or more matrix elements 12 embedded, in analogy to the description of the 1 . 3 . 4 . 5 and 6 can be trained. In addition, the too 1 . 3 . 4 . 5 and 6 described process chambers 10 in the same way without matrix elements 12 , In particular without form-fitting embedding of the reflectors 22 into a matrix element 12 be trained.
  • 8th shows a schematic representation of a process chamber 10 according to a further embodiment of the invention. The process chamber 10 in this case comprises at least in part by a chamber wall 18 enclosed process space 16 , The chamber wall 18 can in this case from one or more process chamber elements 12 . 14 be formed. It is now in at least one process chamber element 12 . 14 arranged at least one recess, in this case, two recesses, in which optical objects, in this case, planar reflectors 22 , can be arranged so that the reflectors 22 even a part of the chamber wall 18 form. In turn, it may be provided that the process space 16 as narrow as possible gap 42 is designed to make the coating process as effective as possible. Again, the process chamber 10 entry ports 26 and exit openings 34 on to the supply and removal of the gas / gas mixture. Overall, this embodiment provides a particularly advantageous embodiment of the process chamber 10 for coating flat reflectors 22 provided. In the same way, however, also reflectors 22 with any geometry as described above on one or more process chamber elements 12 . 14 to be ordered.
  • In the event that, for example, both sides of the reflectors 22 be coated, it may also be provided that the reflectors 22 such on the process chamber element 12 . 14 can be arranged at the same time that they are part of the chamber wall 18 of two process chambers 10 form, so to speak, for example, as part of a partition between two process spaces 16 ,
  • In summary, the present invention enables a significantly lower gas and precursor consumption while at the same time significantly increasing the production volume. In addition, the more reliable avoidance of dead spaces results in a significantly higher process reliability.

Claims (15)

  1. Process chamber ( 10 ) for a chemical reaction coating process for coating at least one optical object to be coated ( 22 ), comprising - a chamber wall ( 18 ), which has a process space ( 16 ) at least partially includes; At least one passage opening ( 26 ; 34 ), which is adapted to at least one precursor ( 28a ; 28b ) and / or a purge gas ( 29 ) through the lead-through opening; and at least one first process chamber element ( 12 ; 14 ), which is a first part of the chamber wall ( 18 ) provides; characterized in that the first process chamber element ( 12 ; 14 ) is formed such that the at least one optical object to be coated ( 22 ) on at least one first process chamber element ( 12 ; 14 ) can be arranged that the at least one optical object ( 22 ) itself a second part of the chamber wall ( 18 ).
  2. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to claim 1, characterized in that the process chamber is designed for a designed as Atomlagenabscheidungsprozess chemical reaction coating process.
  3. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the at least one first process chamber element ( 12 ; 14 ) at least one part of the process space ( 16 ) limiting first chamber element surface ( 12a ; 14a ), wherein at least a portion of the first chamber element surface ( 12a ; 14a ) having a three-dimensional structure corresponding to a three-dimensional object surface ( 22a ) of the optical object to be coated ( 22 ) is trained.
  4. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the first chamber element surface ( 12a ; 14a ) has a plurality of regions each having a three-dimensional structure corresponding to three-dimensional object surfaces of a plurality of optical objects to be coated ( 22 ).
  5. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the three-dimensional structure of the at least one region of the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) corresponding to a three-dimensional object surface of an optical object to be coated ( 22 ) is formed such that the optical object to be coated ( 22 ) into the process chamber ( 10 ) can be introduced, that at least a part of the object surface ( 22a ) of the optical object to be coated ( 22 ) in at least a portion of the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) of the first process chamber element ( 12 ) in a form-fitting manner on the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) is present.
  6. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the first process chamber element ( 12 ) is at least partially formed from such a first, in particular elastically reversibly deformable, material that the first process chamber element ( 12 in an arrangement of an optical object to be coated ( 22 ) in at least a portion of the first chamber element surface ( 12 ) to a form-fitting attachment to a part of the object surface ( 22a ) of the optical object to be coated ( 22 ) is deformable.
  7. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the process chamber ( 10 ) a second process chamber element ( 14 ) aufeist that such on the first process chamber element ( 12 ) can be arranged that the first process chamber element ( 12 ) and the second process chamber element ( 14 ) in an arrangement with each other, include the process space.
  8. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to claim 7, characterized in that the second process chamber element ( 14 ) a third part of the chamber wall ( 18 ) and a second chamber element surface ( 14a ), wherein at least a portion of the second chamber element surface is formed with a three-dimensional structure.
  9. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of claims 7 or 8, characterized in that the second process chamber element ( 14 ) as a further first process chamber element ( 12 ), in particular such that the structure of the second chamber element surface ( 14a ) of the further first process chamber element ( 12 ) formed second process chamber element ( 14 ) identical to the structure of the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) of the first process chamber element ( 12 ) is trained.
  10. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of claims 7 or 8, characterized in that the three-dimensional structure of the second chamber element surface ( 14a ) corresponding to the three-dimensional structure of the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) is formed, that in an arrangement of the first process chamber element ( 12 ) on the second process chamber element ( 14 ) A gap ( 42 ) between the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) and the second chamber element surface ( 14a ) is formed with a maximum predetermined gap width.
  11. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of claims 7, 8 or 10, characterized in that the second process chamber element ( 14 ) is formed of a second material different from the first material.
  12. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of claims 7, 8, 10 or 11, characterized in that the second process chamber element ( 14 ) as filler ( 14 ) is formed and the three-dimensional structure in at least a portion of the second chamber element surface ( 14a ) as a negative shape of the three-dimensional structure in at least a region of the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) is formed, in particular with a size changed by an extension factor.
  13. Process chamber ( 10 ) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the first process chamber element ( 12 ) at least one entrance opening ( 26 ) and / or exit port ( 36 ), which in such a way in the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) terminates from at least a portion of the first chamber element surface ( 12a ) is enclosed.
  14. Method for coating at least one optical object to be coated ( 22 ) by means of a chemical reaction coating process, comprising the steps of: a) providing the at least one optical object to be coated ( 22 ); b) providing a process chamber ( 10 ) with a chamber wall ( 18 ), which has a process space ( 16 ) at least in part, the chamber wall defining a first process chamber element ( 12 ; 14 ), which has a first part of the chamber wall ( 18 ) provides; c) introducing the at least one object to be coated ( 22 ) at least partially into the process space ( 16 ); d) flow through the process space ( 16 ) with at least one precursor ( 28a ; 28b ) and / or a purge gas ( 19 ); e) wherein the at least one precursor ( 28a ; 28b ) and / or the purge gas ( 19 ) for flowing through the process space ( 16 ) through at least one passage opening ( 26 ; 34 ) in the chamber wall ( 18 ) of the process space ( 16 ) be performed; characterized in that in step c) the optical object to be coated ( 22 ) at least at the first process chamber element ( 12 ; 14 ) is arranged, that the optical object ( 22 ) itself a second part of the chamber wall ( 18 ).
  15. A method according to claim 14, characterized in that as a chemical reaction coating process, an atomic layer deposition process is performed, wherein when flowing through the process space ( 16 ) with at least one precursor and / or a purge gas in step d) the steps d1) alternately and by a predeterminable time interval temporally spaced flow through the process space ( 16 ) with at least two different precursors ( 28a ; 28b ); and d2) flow through the process space ( 16 ) with the purge gas ( 19 ) at least during the predeterminable time interval; be performed.
DE201310219213 2013-09-24 2013-09-24 Process chamber for a chemical reaction coating process and method for coating an optical object by means of a chemical reaction coating process Withdrawn DE102013219213A1 (en)

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PCT/EP2014/067916 WO2015043850A1 (en) 2013-09-24 2014-08-22 Process chamber for a chemical reaction coating process and method for coating an optical object by means of a chemical reaction coating process

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