Industrial Electronics

Video: Real-time gas monitoring minimizes wafer loss, maximizes thermocouple life

03 May 2022

Conax Technologies has unveiled LeakDefender brand thermocouples (TCs) for deployment in ASM EPSILON reactors in conjunction with the TC Sentry System to monitor quartz sheaths for leaks in real time.

In the harsh environment of a reactor, the quartz sheath is attacked and can fail prematurely, causing wafer contamination and reduced tool yield. This leakage cannot be detected right away with standard TCs, and it can lead to operator safety concerns, damage to the tool, wafer yield loss and unscheduled tool downtime.

New LeakDefender TCs are used to monitor the quartz sheaths for gas leaks in real time and allow for fast shut down of the reactor. When a leak is detected in any of the TCs, the TC Sentry System can immediately shut down the reactor to avoid costly contamination to the chamber and minimize or eliminate wafer loss.

LeakDefender brand thermocouples with gas sensing tubes. Source: Conax TechnologiesLeakDefender brand thermocouples with gas sensing tubes. Source: Conax Technologies

The TC Sentry System gas monitor, manufactured by Helios Technical Services, is capable of detecting minute volumes of hydrogen and triggering one or more control outputs. The ultra-fast detection and response of the system will prevent product loss and contamination of items internal to the process chamber. Detecting a single premature TC sheath failure can save significant time and money.

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