Cost reduction in Thin film Business
Core items offered by W&L are services specialized in the cost structure of vacuum coating processes and answers to the following FAQs
- How can costs for consumables be reduced?
- Which measures for improved consumable material utilization are meaningful?
- How can the throughput of fabrication plants be increased for faster return-on-investment?
Cost savings on consumables and capital expenditure is decisive for when choosing from a number of competitive processes. However, cost structures of vacuum processes can vary substantially as the following examples demonstrate:
PECVD of thin film diamond v/s PECVD of amorphous and microcrystalline silicon.
The cost of diamond processes are primarily driven by capital expenditure whereas the cost drivers for silicon processes are consumables. Both diamond and silicon processes are based on hydrogen dilution. But in the latter case it is the cost of Silane gas.
Magnetron sputter processes
The cost structure of magnetron sputter processes is subject to similar constraints as PECVD processes. Consumables like sputter target materials generally have the greatest impact on the overall costs. These are determined by target utilization and surround design. The success of any kind of thin film process technology will always depends on profitability, besides issues such as process stability and reproducibility. This is particularly true for high vacuum plasma processes which are often challenged by atmospheric alternatives.