The process of silicon or thin film photovoltaic solar cells requires precise and reliable gas and vapor flow control. Bronkhorst® has over 30 years of experience supplying mass flow control solutions for many different applications within such markets as semiconductor, chemical and solar industries.
Our instruments, many of which can be seen at Intersolar North America 2013, July 9-11, Moscone Center San Francisco, Booth #8815, are made to a customers' specification, in whichever style is suitable, for laboratory, industrial systems or OEM installations.
In PV and Semicon production application, Bronkhorst thermal mass flow meters/controllers are used for accurate, repeatable control of inert gases such as nitrogen, hydrogen and argon as well as handling reactive gases such as oxygen, carbon dioxide and silane, covering flow rates from 1 sccm to 6000 scfm (Full Scale values). Our thermal mass flow sensors are used in combination with uniquely shaped laminar flow elements, offering high accuracy and excellent temperature stability. Instruments of our Select series can be offered with optional Multi Gas / Multi Range functionality. This option offers greater flexibility for user selection of both flow ranges and gas types, maintaining high accuracy and turndown range for measurement and control. Thanks hereto, users of these instruments can rescale their instruments on site, saving time (and money) for mounting and dismounting. For the convenience of the user, Bronkhorst developed an easy-to-use software tool called FlowTune for changing the configuration of Select instruments.
Besides gas flow instruments, Bronkhorst offers liquid flow meters/controllers for small flow ranges, from 75 mg/h up to 20 kg/h based on thermal mass flow sensors and up to 600 kg/h using Coriolis mass flow sensors. Our mini CORI-FLOW™ Coriolis mass flow meters/controllers measure mass directly, not requiring any conversion factors, but also rescalable via a free software tool. Moreover, the digital instruments offer density and temperature as secondary output. In Photovoltaic industry, these liquid flow meters are being applied for spray coating processes and for controlling liquid precursors to vaporizing systems for CVD chambers. For the latter, Bronkhorst have developed a unique Vapor Delivery Module to realize mass flow control of vapors, based on the combination of gas and liquid flow meters. It can be applied for atmospheric, pressurized and vacuum processes, vaporizing liquid flows from 0.25 to approx. 1200 g/h (depending on the fluid and process conditions). These vaporizers are ideally suited for vapor deposition and coating processes for the production of semiconductor chips, displays and solar cells.
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