Benchtop Plasma Cleaners

Benchtop Plasma Cleaners

Our low-cost plasma cleaners are entry-level units which are suitable for a wide range of basic plasma cleaning and surface activation procedures.

There are two models to choose from; 100mm diameter and 150mm diameter plasma chamber. Either choice is perfect for occasional and low-throughput laboratory or production use. They do not have the range of options or upgrade features available with our other plasma cleaner models but deliver unbeatable value in a compact, bench-top unit.

  • Available in 100mm dia. and 150mm dia. plasma chamber versions
  • Single, fixed flow gas inlet
  • Continuously variable power setting
  • With or without vacuum pump
  • Also available for rental for proof of concept trials

Plasma Cleaning for Electron Microscopy

Our low-cost plasma cleaners/plasma ashers for electron microscopy users are designed specifically for fast and efficient cleaning of sample holders and individual grids and stubs.

Our plasma cleaner/plasma asher range for electron microscopy are fully automated bench-top plasma cleaners that come with standard adapters which are suitable for the sample holders supplied with all the major microscope manufacturers. The plasma output power is fully variable over the range 0-100W, resulting in a very controllable & gentle cleaning process. Common sources of error inside the microscope are clearly reduced with plasma cleaning and the dwell time during the measurement is significantly increased.

Plasma cleaner/asher for SEM/TEM

  • Fully variable plasma output between 0-100W
  • Very low power setting as standard
  • Adapters for common SEM sample holders
  • Compact laboratory size bench-top instrument
  • Operation with a range of cleaning gases


Plasma Cleaning Glass, Metals & Ceramics

Ultra-fine plasma cleaning removes organic contamination from the surface making surfaces more wettable.

Plasma cleaning glass, metals & ceramics components is rapidly displacing time consuming, hit and miss, solvent and aqueous based cleaning methods. For this industry in particular; inefficient wet chemical procedures ultimately lead to higher costs and reduced yield and even prolonged treatments can be ineffective in removing seemingly insignificant trace levels of organic contaminants that can ultimately affect how fit for purpose a particular component is.

New legislation will also restrict the use of environmentally unfriendly chemicals in addition to e.g. trichloroethylene. Plasma cleaning offers significant advantages over wet cleaning methods alone and can enable a leading market position for those adopting it early.

Ultra-fine cleaning of glass, metals & ceramics

  • Removes organic contamination
  • Surfaces are rendered more hydrophilic
  • Improved adhesion
  • Ability to treat temperature sensitive materials


Plasma Cleaning of Optics & Lenses

Plasma cleaning of contact lenses and other optics produces hyper-clean surfaces by removing the thin layer of organic contamination that is present on almost all surfaces.

Organic contamination which may be present on all lens surfaces is typically only a few nanometres thick but it is sufficient to alter optical properties. Plasma cleaning of optics & lenses is performed with oxygen gas, or sometimes even lab air is sufficient, in a few 10’s of seconds and with no chemical waste. Unlike solvent cleaners, plasma cleaning leaves absolutely no residue.

Plasma cleaning of gas permeable contact lenses is now widely used to improve surface wettability characteristics which result in increased comfort for longer and also inhibits deposits. The effects of the plasma can last for many weeks

Plasma cleaning contact lenses

  • Plasma cleaning improves wettability of gas permeable contact lenses
  • Increases patient comfort
  • Plasma cleaning removes trace organic contamination from other optics
  • Surfaces are rendered more hydrophilic


Plasma Cleaning in the PCB Manufacturing process

Plasma cleaning is a dry & environmental friendly technique answering the needs of the printed circuit board (PCB) and electronic component assembly industry. It is a well-established technique for removing residue (desmearing) left behind by laser drilling of vias.

Established PCB Manufacture can incorporate our user friendly & cost-effective cleaning processes easily and efficiently. Our plasma cleaning machines feature multiple loading racks that ensure excellent uniformity across the PCB, between PCB’s and from process to process.

Plasma cleaning PCB's

  • Plasma Cleaning of PCB’s prior to bonding
  • Plasma Activation of printed circuit boards prior to potting & encapsulation
  • Etching & desmearing of epoxy, flex-rigid and Teflon printed circuit boards
  • De-oxidation of gold contacts


Plasma Cleaning prior to Wire Bonding

Plasma cleaning prior to wire bonding efficiently removes organic contaminants and thin oxide layers under high throughput conditions, quickly, efficiently and reproducibly, greatly enhancing yield and reducing bond failures.

In many electronics application areas, there is a stringent requirement for ultra-clean bond pads prior to wire bonding. This is especially true in e.g. semiconductor and space satellite instrumentation fabrication. Wire bond pad contamination results in poor bond pull strength and also bond strength uniformity. Plasma cleaning may be applied as an in-line solution e.g. prior to encapsulation, or as a batch processing step with bespoke frame loading arrangements.

Plasma cleaning prior to wire bonding

  • Custom lead frame loading arrangements
  • Plasma cleaning with single gases and gas mixtures
  • Increased bond pull strength
  • Wide range of plasma cleaner chamber sizes


Plasma Cleaning prior to Spin Coating

Spin coating is widely used to deposit uniform thin films, typically <10nm. An excess amount of a solution is applied to a substrate which is then rotated to high speeds in order to spread the liquid evenly over the surface by centrifugal force. Spin coating has been widely used for several decades in photolithography, to deposit photoresist on silicon wafers, and the scope has been extended in recent years to chemically engineering the interface of support and solution to obtain specific structural order in the deposited thin films [1].

Several important factors influence film deposition, including viscosity of the deposited solution and spin speed for example. Surface wettability also plays an important role and can be controlled with routine plasma cleaning of the substrate prior to deposition. Henniker’s HPT-100 and HPT-200 bench-top plasma systems are widely used for this purpose to achieve clean, contamination free substrates prior to spin coating.

Plasma Cleaners

Plasma cleaning delivers an ultra-fine surface preparation with only air or oxygen as the process gas, although our range of cleaners is compatible with many other gases too. This means an inherently environmentally friendly technique with no waste chemicals, offering a real alternative to both aqueous and solvent based cleaning techniques.

Our range of plasma cleaners are available with various options, such as single or multiple gas inlets, multiple loading trays and rotary drum chambers, making them suitable for many requirements. Our experts have years of experience with different applications and system options and will help you to configure a unit for your exact needs. If you are looking for a robust, trusted plasma cleaner, our range should provide an excellent starting point.

Configuration options:
  • Lab/process scale plasma cleaner chamber volumes starting from 100mm diameter
  • Industrial scale plasma cleaners for large parts/high throughput
  • Multiple shelf configurations
  • Easy to use TFT software control
  • Continuously variable power output

Plasma Treatment Coating Systems

We offer a wide range of Plasma Coating Systems, processes and associated equipment. They can be delivered as general-purpose tools for research, with a variety of options, or with a completely developed and trialled process for any given application and any specific surface property.

Our range of plasma coating systems are available with options such as multiple loading trays, rotary drum chambers and powder handling facilities. We have a wealth of real-world experience in coatings processes and our experts are on hand to provide advice and support for any given application. Our plasma process library is extensive and we are always happy to discuss and provide real-world examples of water repellent coatings, permanently hydrophilic coatings, low friction coatings and other specific functional plasma coatings.

Painting coating system options
  • Chamber volumes up to 150L
  • Multiple internal electrode configurations
  • Functional plasma coatings
  • PLC control with HMI interface
  • Continuously variable power output
  • Permission level access
  • Recipe driven process

Plasma Etch Systems

We supply a wide range of configurable Plasma Etch Systems for both chemical etching and physical etching applications, such as photoresist removal and improving the wettability of fluoropolymers such as PTFE.

Chemical plasma etching is used to ‘roughen’ a surface on the microscopic scale. The surface of the component is etched with a reactive process gas. Material is precisely sputtered off, converted to the gas phase and sucked away via the vacuum system. The surface area is greatly increased, making the material easily wettable. Etching is used before printing, gluing and painting and is particularly useful for processing of e.g. POM and PTFE, which cannot otherwise be printed on or bonded.

Physical etching or reactive ion etching, delivers a highly directional flux of energetic, reactive ions to the material surface. In doing so, a precisely controlled patterning of the substrate occurs as un-masked sample is etched away by the reactive ions. Each of our plasma systems can optionally be fitted with a reactive ion etch electrode making them a perfect, low-cost laboratory development tool in applications such as semiconductor or organic electronics research.

Plasma etch systems
  • Lab/process scale chamber volumes starting from 100mm diameter
  • Operation with reactive gases
  • Easy to use TFT software control
  • Continuously variable power output
  • Driven electrode configuration
  • Gas shower and temperature control options

TEM Sample Plasma Cleaners

Our low cost plasma cleaners / plasma ashers for TEM sample holders are designed specifically for fast and efficient cleaning.

The TEM sample plasma cleaners / plasma ashers are fully automated and comes with standard adapters which are suitable for the sample holders supplied with all the major microscope manufacturers. The plasma output power is fully variable over the range 0-100W, resulting in a very controllable & gentle cleaning process. Common sources of error inside the TEM are clearly reduced with plasma cleaning and the dwell time during the measurement is significantly increased

The TEM plasma cleaner/plasma asher is an application specific solution for low pressure plasma cleaning and preperation of electron microcopy samples including:
  • Low power operation
  • Front feed of TEM sample holder
  • Multiple TEM grids and SEM stub cleaning
  • Re-entrant style sample holder introduction
  • Dual gas inlets for O2/Ar and other gases

Advanced Plasma Surface Treatment Systems

Henniker’s advanced plasma surface treatment systems feature large format vacuum chambers along with many advanced features, all with the reliability of recipe driven PLC control. They are configurable tools that are both robust enough for reliable, repeatable industrial processing and at the same time flexible enough for the research into, and development of, leading-edge plasma processes.

The NEBULA range has been designed around our core technologies in plasma surface treatment and plasma process development. With chamber volumes ranging from 50L to 150L, each instrument may be configured with multiple parts tray/electrodes for either horizontal or vertical mounting arrangements. Additionally, a high capacity rotary drum mechanism can be chosen for the treatment of large numbers of small parts for example.

NEBULA plasma systems are used for cleaning, adhesion improvement and enhanced wetting of surfaces via plasma surface activation. Treatments can be performed equally on metals, polymers, composites, glass and ceramics.

A unique feature of each NEBULA system is the addition of an optional monomer dosing inlet. This is a fully automated device for the introduction of a wide range of liquid monomers to produce permanently functionalised surfaces via plasma polymerisation, greatly extending the range of plasma surface treatment possibilities in a single machine.

  • compact standalone unit
  • user friendly recipe driven interface
  • unlimited recipes and steps per recipe
  • fast treatment time
  • precise & repeatable
  • no hazardous emissions
  • liquid dosing inlet option
  • 50L – 150L chamber volumes
  • Horizontal, vertical and rotary
    drum parts tray options
  • Plasma polymerisation inlet
  • PLC control
  • Fully automated, recipe driven processes