Small, inexpensive UHV chambers have been the backbone of many commercial labs and universities for decades. The cost of larger, feature-rich systems has gone up dramatically in recent years, making compact, DIY chambers even more cost-effective for specialized applications and education.
RBD has a range of products available to add value to your compact chamber, and in fact built our own recently to develop and test our microCMA compact Auger analyzer.
We started with an 8 inch spherical octagon chamber from Kimball Physics. This chamber has two 8.00″ CF and eight 2.75″ CF mounts, with an internal volume of 106.6 cu. in. (1,747 cc):
Rough vacuum gauges are available from a number of companies including Digivac.
Ion gauges and ion gauge controllers are available from a number of companies including Stanford Research Systems
To assist with water vapor desorption, the chamber is fitted with RBD’s miniZ. The mini-Z uses UVC radiation to desorb water from the chamber walls, resulting in faster pump-down times and lower ultimate vacuum.
This chamber is also fitted with RBD’s IG2 2 kV low cost sputter ion gun for specimen cleaning:
The ultimate purpose of this system was to house RBD’s microCMA compact Auger analyzer (shown below with the Z translator attached):
For applications that require elemental analysis, this chamber, with the addition of a PC and CMapp AES acquisition and data massage software, is now a complete system providing quantitative, surface-sensitive Auger electron spectroscopy. At around $50,000 for all the components listed here, this is one example of a budget-sensitive spectroscopy system that can be assembled, repaired and upgraded without costly field service visits.