Thin-Film Coatings


Index - Thin-Film

Dual Ion Beam Sputtering System

DiCon’s thin-film optical coatings are manufactured using DiCon’s Dual Ion Beam Sputtering System. In contrast to single ion beam systems, an additional ion beam is use for 1) pre-coating and substrate cleaning, and 2) to provide extra coating layer bombardment energy for higher deposition density, as shown below. dual ion beam sputtering thin film coating

DiCon uses a proprietary Optical Monitoring System (OMS) that allows inprocess monitoring of the optical parameters of the substrate as layers are being applied, and in-process adjustment of layer thickness. DiCon has over 20 coating chambers that have been modified and optimized for specific coating applications and requirements. We are expert in the use of “hard coatings”, including TiO2, SiO2, Nb2O5, Al2O3, and Ta2O5, for high reliability and stability in harsh environments. The spectrums covered include wavelengths from 250 to 3,000 nm (2,500 to 30,000 Angstroms), spanning UV, visible light, and IR appilications.

thin film coating clean room

Advantages of Ion Beam Sputtering

DiCon’s Dual Ion Beam Sputtering System provides several key advantages, compared to conventional e-beam sputtering processes:
  • Particles carry ~10 times more energy
  • Depositions are more compact, making it difficult for moisture to penetrate
  • Deposition layers are better controlled, therefore sharper spectrum slopes can be achieved
  • Spectrums are less prone to distortion under long-term extreme environmental conditions
  • The resulting coatings are highly durable, easily passing MIL standard tests (Environmental Tests, Tape Test, Eraser Test, and Scratch Inspection, etc.)
ion beam sputtering e-beam sputtering comparison chart

Sample Spectrums for Communications Applications:

Gain Flattening Filter for Erbium-Doped Fiber Amplifier
  • Target shape has loss variation of more than 6 dB
  • Excess loss < 0.2 dB
  • Non-quarter-wavelength layer thickness design
  • Minimum spectrum shift with temperature
100 GHz 4-skip-0 Band Splitter
  • Insertion Loss < 0.2 dB
  • Ripple < 0.1 dB
  • High Isolation for Adjacent Band
  • Hard Coating

Thin-Film Coatings Applications

  • Communications DWDM, GFF, Band Splitter, etc.
  • Defense/Military/Aerospace Infrared, imaging, UV, etc.
  • Bio/Medical/Instrumentation Fluorescence Technology, Spectroscopy, Laser Systems, Sensing, etc.
  • Scientific/Astronomy Custom size filters, custom wavelength ranges, etc
thin film coating applications