Modern manufacturing processes such as the manufacture of integrated circuits in microelectronics or solar cells often take place under vacuum conditions. Heraeus Noblelight
Vacuum processes also offer advantages in the coating of glass or metals. Many of these processes require high-energy, precisely controllable heating sources, and quartz glass infrared emitters can help. Quartz glass infrared emitters transfer heat without contact and at high output, and they also respond quickly to control signals.

The use of infrared processes under vacuum conditions is not as simple as it sounds. Reflection within a closed chamber can sometimes affect the heat distribution. Chip slices, discs and work pieces are processed at very high temperatures under vacuum conditions. In order to do this, extremely high heating energy has to be precisely targeted and transferred efficiently. At the same time, the vacuum, high surrounding temperature or aggressive media act on the heat source.

With its newly introduced vacuum testing equipment, Heraeus Noblelight, Hanau, Germany, can carry out tests on heating processes in automated long-term operation under load conditions relating as closely as possible to those found in practice. The company has expanded its vacuum test chamber at its in-house Applications Centre with the introduction of advanced technology vacuum test equipment. Under the kind of loading met in practice, plant-incorporating infrared heating processes can be designed cost effectively and energy efficiently, and maintenance intervals realistically projected.

Continuous pressures up to 10-6 mbar can be generated with the vacuum test equipment and, depending on customer specification, short-wave infrared emitters or medium-wave carbon infrared emitters can be selected. A wide range of emitters can be varied, in arrangement and in number. Tests are computer logged and recorded and evaluated with the customer.