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Subject: Re: Vacuum Coating as a Hobby?

Date: 03/20/00 at 10:13 PM
Posted by: wcteng
E-mail: wcteng@yahoo.com
Message Posted:

In Reply to: Re: Vacuum Coating as a Hobby? posted by Mike Gray on 03/20/00 at 9:22 AM:

It seems that you have a sputtering source already. That is great. I think you can just go with it to coat your metal film. The most first thing you should do is to get the Ar gas ready for use. Since you purged with plain air while coating copper, I guess you must have some problems then. You should not get shining copper metal film, but cloudy film. Maybe you only got some dark powder on your substrates. What you got is some compound but not copper. Another problem is that the coating rate should be very low. That is common for compound coating. Your target should be balckened after sputtering. That black thing on the surface of the copper target should be copper oxide. If you coat with a DC power supply, you should find a lot of arc happening in the process. All of these problem will be solved or get better after you change the gas to Ar. And, the reason why the silver and gold coating has higher rate is that these two metals have less tendency to be oxided. In my own experience the copper suppering coating rate should be higher than those of silver and gold. I would suggest you to purge some more times to make the gas in chamber "cleaner" while coating.
You can get a commercial pure copper plate and ask a machine shop to shape it for fitting it into your sputter gun(source). This will be much cheaper than a REAL copper target. The purity of this, of course, will be worse but it should be good enough for a copper mirror.
I am quite positive that you will be happy with what you get after you use Ar gas only except that your system has a badly leaking problem.
Good luck.

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