Патент USA US3086504код для вставки
April 23, 1963 R. v. D. STRONG 3,086,496 VACUUM COATING APPARATUS Filed Nov. 9, 1959 > INVENTOR. RICH ARD V. D._ STRONG WM Aw ATTORNEY United States latent O 'i ICE ,. 1 v asserts Patented Apr. 23, 1963 2 obtaining access to its interior, so as to permit repairs and 3,086,496 VACUUM COATING APPARATUS Richard V. D. Strong, Meadowbrook, Pa, assignor to F. J. Stokes Corporation, Philadelphia, Pa., a corpora tion of Pennsylvania Filed Nov. 9, 1959, Scr. No. 851,865 2 Claims. (Cl. 118-49) replacement, while at the same time permitting a vacuum tight seal to be obtained when the interior of the outer vessel 10‘ is evacuated. 'The understructure designated generally as 22 may be movably supported on the base 12. A wide variety of understructmres may be utilized, and no claim is made as to any speci?c understructure construction. Preferably the understructures 22 should comprise a plurality of threaded standards 24, each of which should be thread ably received within nuts carried by the bed plate 26. In articles, such as a web of material, with a metal or the like this manner, the height of the support plate 28 in respect which has been vaporized in a vacuum. to the base 12 may be selectively regulated. In the vacuum coating of articles by contact with vapor The base 12 may ‘be provided with guide ways 30 and ized material from a boat or reservoir of molten mate rial, severe difficulties have been encountered due to the 15 32 for permitting the transfer of the understructure 2-2 and the material carried thereon along the surface of the diffusion of the material being vaporized to the feed base 12. source. For example, in the vaporization of aluminum or The support plate 28 carries the means for feeding the zinc, where the same is introduced as a wire into a boat, material to be vaporized as well as the processing cham deposition of the vaporized aluminum or zinc on the means for introducing the wire to the boat has caused clog 20 her. The material to be vaporized is preferably in the form ging and jamming of such means and resultant failure of The present invention is directed to vacuum coating apparatus, and more particularly to apparatus for coating the apparatus. Since satisfactory commercial production requires the continuous adding of material to be vaporized of a wire coil, such as the wire coil :34 carried on the spool 36. For the purposes of illustration, in the example set forth herein, the wire coil 34 will be referred to as a to the boat, the diffusion of such material to the feed source and clogging of the introduction of the feed has pre 25 coil of aluminum wire 38. The spool 36 is r-ota-tably mounted, as on trunnions, in vented e?icient commercial utilization of vacuum coating techniques where vacuum coating for protracted periods of time is desired. The present invention has as an object the provision of a novel vacuum coating apparatus. The present invention has as another object the provi sion of a vacuum coating apparatus in which the supply of the material to be vaporized may be constantly replen ished so that the vacuum coating apparatus may be on termediate the standards 40‘. The standards 40 are car ried on the support plate 28, and are rigidly connected to spaced standards 42 by the connecting arm 44. A shaft 46 is supported in bushings 48 and 50 above the standards 40‘ and 42. The rack 52. having an internal bore is clamped on the shaft 46 which extends through its bore. The rack 52 and shaft 46 are recipro-cated in bushings 48 and 50, as will be explained below. The segment gear 54 is pivotably carried in respect to 35 stream for protracted periods of time. its gear-support 56 on the pivot 58. Thus, the segment This invention has as another object the provision of gear 54 is provided with a collar which rotates about ‘vacuum coating apparatus in which the loss of vaporized the pivot 58. The gear-support 56 is carried on the con necting arm 44. A lever 68 is rigidly secured to the collar of the segment gear 54 which embraces the pivot 58. The free end of the lever 60 is coupled to the compression coil spring 62, The collar of the segment gear 54 also car ferred; it being understood, however, that this invention ries the link 64 on which is mounted outside of vessel 10 is not limited to the precise arrangements and instrumen the cam follower 66. The action of the compression coil talities shown. FIGURE 1 is a schematic elevational View of a pres 45 spring 62 urges the cam follower 66 against the heart shaped cam 68. ently preferred embodiment of the vacuum coating appa The heart shaped cam 68 is rotatab-ly mounted on the ratus of the present invention. outside of vessel 10 on the shaft 70 which carries the FIGURE 2 is a fragmentary plan view revealing the sprocket 72. The sprocket 72 is driven by the chain drive operation of the wire feed. 74 which is coupled to the sprocket 76 of the gear box FIGURE 3 is a sectional view taken on line 3—3 of 78 which is rotated by the motor '80. The engagement be FIGURE ‘1. tween the cam follower 66 and the rotating heart shaped FIGURE 4 is a view taken on line 4-—-4 of FIGURE 3. cam 68 will give a uniform ‘oscillating motion to the seg FIGURE 5 is a sectional view taken on iine 5—5 of ment gear 54, which will result in the uni-form movement FIGURE 2. FIGURE 6 is a view similar to that of FIGURE 3 55 of the rack member 52 on the shaft 46. The aluminum wire 38 is urged towards the processing showing a modi?ed embodiment in which reclamation of chamber 82 by means of the feeder 84. The feeder 84 in coating metal from the shield is effected. coating material on the feed source is minimized. Other objects will appear hereinafter. For the purpose of illustrating the invention there is shown in the drawings forms which are presently pre cludes a pair of vertically spaced rotating members, be Referring to the drawings, wherein like reference char tween which the wire 38 is passed, namely the driver acters refer to like parts, the vacuum coating apparatus of the present invention comprises an outer vessel 10‘ having 60 86 and the idler 88. Preferably the driver 86 is provided with a knurled outer surface, .and the idler 88 is formed a base 12, sides 14 and 16, and a ceiling !18. The entire with a smooth surface. The inlet 90 to the feeder 84 interior of the outer vessel 10 may be evacuated to a high comprises a relatively large bore ‘guide tube, while the vacuum through the conduits 20 and 20a in the side 16. outlet 92 of the feeder 84' is coupled to the feed duct 94. Thus, the conduits 20‘ and 20a may be connected to a feed duct ‘94 comprises a metal tube of relatively vacuum system (not shown) whereby the interior of the 65 The small inside diameter. Preferably, the feed duct 94 is outer vessel 10 may be evacuated. lined with a self-lubricating material 95, such as the plastic A wide variety of outer vessels may be utilized, as Te?on, a tetra?uoroethylene polymer, to facilitate the will be readily understood by one having skill in the art, movement of the wire '38 therethrough. and accordingly the detailed construction of the outer 70 Since the feeder 84 is ?xedly secured to the rack-mem vessel 10 will not be set forth herein. It is, of course, to ber 52 it is reciprocated therewith upon the movement be understood that the outer vessel 10 includes means for of the segment gear 54. 3,086,496 3 4 The rotation of the knurled driver 86 by which the aluminum wire 38 is urged through the feeder 84 is ac Complished notwithstanding the movement of the feeder 84 in the manner set forth below. The knurled driver 86 is carried ‘at the end of the rod 96 on which is carried one member of the universal joint dictated by the process requirements (see in particular FIGURE 3). The regulation of the distance of the shield 126 from the boat 128, and the size of the posts 132 and the distance which they project beyond the feed duct 94 permit closely limiting the extent of deposition of aluminum on the feed 98. The other member of the universal joint 98 is ?xedly ing portion of the feed duct about the discharge end 130 secured to the coupling rod 106 of the spline coupling thereof. 102. The spline coupling 182 also receives the coupling Thus, the temperature of the molten aluminum being rod 104 which carries at its opposite end one member of 10 vaporized within the boat will ‘be of the order of 1,800” the universal joint 106. The other member of the uni C. The temperature of the shield 126 must be su?iciently versal joint 186 is secured to the shaft 108 which is car high so aluminum will deposit thereon and remain in ried in the bearing 110 and which has on its end the the liquid state. This can be accomplished by maintain sprocket 112. The sprocket ‘112 is driven by the chain ing the temperature of the shield within the range between drive 114 which is coupled to the sprocket 116 of the gear the melting point and the boiling point of aluminum, box 118 which is driven by the motor 120‘. namely between about 659° C. and l,800° C. The pair of universal joints 98 and 106 and the rela The shield 126 will be heated by virtue of its disposi tively telescoping motion of the coupling rods 180 and tion closely adjacent the boat 128. Its temperature will 104 in the spline coupling 102 enables the feeder 84 be in turn dependent upon such distance, and on the to be rcciprocated, as shown in phantom line in FIGURE diameter of the posts 132, their number, and their con 2, while the knurled driver 86 is being rotated due to ductivity. Since the relative position of the ‘shield 126 the action of the chain drive 114 on the sprocket 112. in relation to the duct 94 and boat 128 can be selectively The feed duct 94 is supported by the guide 122 which regulated, precise control of the temperature of the shield is carried on the free end of the shaft 46. The front portion of the feed duct 94 is provided with the cooling coil 124 through which liquid coolant may be introduced. The cooling coil 124 prevents the feeding portion of the feed duct 94 which is disposed within the processing 126 can be accomplished. By maintaining the shield 126 at a temperature Xbelow the boiling point of the aluminum being vaporized and below its vaporization temperature, aluminum vaporized from the boat 128 will be condensed on shield 126 away chamber 82 from becoming overheated. This is neces from the discharge end 130 of the feed duct 94, thereby sary as melting of the aluminum wire 38 within the ‘feed 30 not clogging such feed duct 94. duct 94 must be avoided for the satisfactory operation of the apparatus of the present invention. A shield 126 formed of high melting metal may be pro vided on the feeding portion of the feed duct 94 at the ‘side thereof adjacent the boat or crucible 128 in which ‘the molten aluminum obtained from the melting of the aluminum wire 38 discharged from the feeding portion of the feed duct 94 is carried. The shield 126 is interposed ‘between the boat 128 and ‘the discharge end 130 of the feed duct 94. The shield '126 is carried on the posts 132 which are ?xedly secured to the sides of the feed duct 94 in the region of its feed ing portion adjacent its ‘discharge end 130. Thus, the While it is possible to provide independent heating of the shield 126 as by the provision of electrical conduits running thereto, the same is normally not necessary, since satisfactory heating of the shield 126 can be effected due to the radiation of heat from the boat 128. Where de sired, the disposition of the liquid particles from the shield 126 may be regulated so that they reenter the boat 128 or fall onto the feed Wire 38 by positioning the location of the shield 126 in respect to the boat 128 or feed Wire 38. An embodiment in which the coating metal liquid particles are recaptured after having dripped from shield 126 by being caught within ‘boat 128 is shown in FIG URE 6. posts 132 may be secured to the outside wall surface of A coolant tray 143 is carried on the standards 136 and the ‘feed duct 94 as by welding or brazing, or clamping, 45 138 at a spaced distance beneath the boat 128 to protect provided that the weldment or brazement is capable of the mechanical and electrical parts therebelow ‘from withstanding high temperatures. ‘thermal radiation and haphazard diffusion of vaporized The relative distance between the discharge end 130 aluminum about the bottom portion of the processing and the shield 126 may be selectively adjusted ‘as will be chamber 82. explained below to meet speci?c requirements. 50 By moving the discharge end 130 of the feed duct 94 The shield 126 is provided with an aperture 134 which along the length of the boat 128, engagement of the is in spaced alignment to the discharge end 130 of the aluminum with the boat is along the length of the boat feed duct 94. This enables aluminum wire 38 discharged rather than in a localized area. This both facilitates in from the discharge end 130 of the feed duct 94 to pass the vaporization of the aluminum and also increases the through the shield 126 into the boat 128. life of the boat, since the wear at the region of the engage The shield 126 has a su?icient length to‘ protect the ment of the boat with the aluminum wire 38 is dispersed discharge end 130 and the immediate region at all sides over a wide area rather than localized. , of such discharge end 130 including7 the region in which The outer vessel 10 is provided with a shelf 144 having the posts 132 are secured to the feed duct 94 from the adverse affects of aluminum depositing from the boat 128 on the feed duct 94. The boat 128, which may comprise one or more boats in series or other disposition, is of conventional construc a slot 146 disposed above the boat 128. As seen in FIG URE 1, the slot ‘146 may have a width somewhat larger than the boat 128, since the metal being vaporized will leave the boat 128 ‘along a path which will diverge from the ends of the boat as well as include the region directly tion, and may be formed from boron nitride or other re above the boat (see phantom lines in the right portion fractory, provided with conducting ‘material, so that the 65 of FIGURE 1). boat 128 may be heated to a temperature su?icient to The material to be coated, which may be paper, foil, effect the boiling of the aluminum introduced to it from the aluminum wire 38. Thus, the boat 128 may be car ried on standards ‘136 and 138 within the processing chamber 82. The standards 136 and 138 are provided with electrical conduits 140 and 142 for effecting heating plastic, etc. is shown in the illustrated embodiment as comprising a web 148, such as a web of plastic like Mylar. A wide variety of means may be used to feed the web 148 over the slot 146, and no claim of invention is of the boat 128. made in the present application for any particular means The discharge end 130 of the feed duct 94 with its to do so. In the illustrated embodiment, the web 148 associated shield 126 is spaced adjacent boat 128 as 75 is carried between two rollers, one roller 150 being 3,086,496 6 shown, with one of the rollers, namely the roller 150 being rotated by the motor 152. The apparatus of the present invention enables pro longed runs to be made. Thus, the metal to be vaporized may ‘be continuously fed into the boat 128 at the same rate at which such metal is being vaporized, so that a con of coating metal from the duct may be fed to the open boat, said shield being mounted on heat-conducting members which are ?xedly secured to the feed duct, and with said heat-conducting members carrying away heat from said shield. 2. Vacuum coating apparatus for coating a metal onto stant inventory of molten metal may be maintained with an article including a vacuum chamber containing an in the boat 128. Since the apparatus of the present in open heated boat for vaporizing the coating metal, and vention provides for both long life of the boat 128‘ and feeding means for feeding coating metal to said open avoidance of clogging of the discharge end 130 of the 10 boat, said feeding means including a feed duct through feed duct 94, the apparatus may function for extended which the wire of the coating metal is fed to the boat, periods of time without the necessity for ceasing produc said feeding means being operative to feed wire pass ing therethrough in a plane parallel to the longitudinal tion to replace either the boat 128 or the feed duct 94 (the two most common causes of failure in prior axis of said boat, with the discharge end of said duct vacuum coating equipment being the failure of the boat 15 being spaced adjacent said boat, the discharge end of which was largely due to the localized introduction of said duct being spaced laterally from the longitudinal the aluminum wire, or the clogging of the discharge end axis of said boat, a shield secured to said duct and spaced of the feed duct due to deposition of vaporized metal intermediate said boat and the discharge end of said thereon and condensation of such vaporized metal on the duct, said shield being of sufficient size to block access cooled feed duct). 20 of vaporized coating metal to the discharge end of the The present invention may be embodied in other feed duct and the portion of the feed duct adjacent to the speci?c forms without ‘departing from the spirit or es vdischarge end, with said shield having an aperture there sential attributes thereof and, accordingly, reference in which is in alignment with the discharge end of the should be made to the appended claims, rather than to the duct through which the Wire of coating metal from the foregoing speci?cation as indicating the scope of the duct may ‘be fed to the open boat, said shield being in such close proximity to the open boat that when metal invention. I claim: is vaporized from said boat, said shield is heated above 1. Vacuum coating apparatus for coating a metal onto the melting temperature of the metal being vaporized by an article including a vacuum chamber containing an radiant heat from said boat, said shield being positioned open heated boat for vaporizing the coating metal, and above the boat in such disposition that liquid particles feeding means for feeding coating metal to said open boat, said feeding means including a feed duct through which a wire of the coating metal is fed to the boat, with on the face of the shield drop therefrom into the boat. the discharge end of said duct being spaced adjacent said boat, the discharge end of said duct being spaced later 35 ally from the longitudinal axis of said boat, and a shield secured to said duct and spaced intermediate said boat and the discharge end of said duct, said shield being of sufficient size to block access of vaporized coating metal to the discharge end of the feed duct and the portion 40 of the feed duct adjacent to the discharge end, with said shield having an aperture therein which is in alignment with the discharge end of the duct through which the wire References Cited in the ?le of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,587,036 2,635,579 2,664,853 2,691,814 2,715,617 Germer et a1. ________ __ Feb. Chadsey ____________ __ Apr. Schuler _____________ __ Jan. Tait ________________ __ Oct. White ______________ __ Aug. 26, 1952 21, 1953 5, 1954 2,914,643 Fields ______________ __ Nov. 24, 1959 2,922,869 Giannini et al. ________ __ Jan. 26, 1960 19, 1954 16, 1955 .