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UV Cleaning


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UV Cleaning

A number of process technologies that enhance the characteristics of solid surfaces have been established. Neglected for many years the surface processing method using ultraviolet radiation has gained wide acceptance throughout the organic electronics industry.


UV Cleaning has become an indispensable technology to manufacture OLEDs as it provides a simple, inexpensive and fast method of obtaining ultra-clean surfaces. Being an atmospheric, dry process at room temperature it provides a simple, inexpensive and fast method of modifying and obtaining ultra-clean surfaces.


Modification directly enhances the adhesion power of the treated surface, while cleaning gets rid of residual organic contaminants. Commonly used substrate materials are glass, polymers, metals and ceramics. For this application mainly high output low pressure mercury lamps are used which emit primarily at 185 nm and 254 nm.


The oxidation reaction to decompose organic compounds is proceeded first by cracking molecular bonds of the contaminants and oxygen molecules utilizing the 185 nm wavelength.


As a result excited molecules with an increased hydrophilic nature and ozone are formed. Simultaneously the 254 nm wavelength cracks the ozone into activated oxygen. Radicals such as -OH, -COO, -CO and -COOH react with the atomic oxygen and form volatile components (CO2 and H20) which desorb from the surface and are flushed out of the process chamber.


After exposure to UV light, the surface of the substrate has been cleaned or modified and the bonding force of adhesives will rise which is of specific interest in OLED encapsulation. MBRAUN Ultraviolet Ozone Systems are widely used in the organic electronic and semiconductor industries as well as in scientific research fields including biology, chemistry, physics and materials science.


These systems have been specifically designed for being integrated into gloveboxes and therefore feature a hermetically sealed process chamber as the resulting volatile components harm OLED devices. Furthermore special measures have been taken to remove the ozone from the exhaust process gas by catalytic reaction.

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The Manual MBRAUN MB-UV-O3-Cleaner is an integrated system for UV ozone cleaning of semiconductor and optical surfaces and is widely used in the electronic and semiconductor industries as well as in scientific research fields including biology, chemistry, physics and materials science. It has been developed in response to a need for easy-to-use, high quality, reliable and affordable instrumentation for use in industrial and research institutions worldwide.


These systems have proven being highly effective for the removal of molecular organic contaminations and surface preparation via intense ultraviolet light emitted at wavelengths of 185 nm and 254 nm. The process provides a clean, hydrocarbon-free optical surface with significantly improved thin film and UV resin adhesion characteristics.


The core difference to other UV-Cleaning solutions is the hermetically sealed process chamber which makes the MB UV-O3 Cleaner the only UV-Cleaning unit which has been specifically developed for being integrated into inertgas enclosures and processes. The design features ozone and UV light resistant components as well as isolation valves on the process chamber gas inlet and exhaust sot that the process chamber is completely isolated either from the inert glovebox atmosphere (integrated version) or the operator itself (stand-alone version).


The heart of the equipment is a low-pressure quartz mercury vapor lamp, which emits in the 254 and 185 nanometer range. Ozone and atomic oxygen are generated, and organic contaminant molecules are excited or dissociated by the absorption of the 254 nm wavelength UV. The excited organic contaminants react with the atomic oxygen to form volatile products such as CO2, H2O, etc. The whole process takes place at essentially room temperature in one to several minutes.


The control unit allows setting the process (irradiation) time from 1-999.9 minutes whilst an integrated flow meter is used to adjust the process gas flow during the cleaning process. Once the pre-set irradiation time has ended, the oxygen flow is automatically shut off and the process chamber is purged with nitrogen until all process gases have been removed. Integrated safety interlocks are provided to shut off the UV radiation if the door is opened during the process or the exhaust is interrupted.


The system itself is available as a bench top (stand-alone) version, as a fully glovebox integrated manually loaded tool and in a robot loaded, fully automatic setup which allows integrating the unit into a complete assembly line.

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