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Roll2Roll Coating - Flexible solar panels

Roll-to-roll Film Coating

Film coatings or thin film coatings find a wide field of applications in the packaging and pharmaceutical industry.

The coating systems use a roll with a thin, flexible plastic film and directs this film through the coating system where the layers are applied. After the coating process the coated foil is rolled up again and can be used for further procedures.

Another increasing market for roll-to-roll (R2R) film coating is flexible substrates for electronics, display technology and photovoltaics.

The process flow is similar to the packaging and pharmaceutical industry. But the sizes of the coating systems and the used vacuum equipment can be different.

The layers for this kind of coating are usually applied by physical vapor deposition (PVD) or evaporation processes and take place under vacuum conditions in the pressure range of 10-3 to 10-4 mbar.

Typical high vacuum pumps used in these applications are oil diffusion pumps (standard for packaging foils) or turbomolecular vacuum pumps like the TURBOVAC family which are often used for the coating of electronics, displays and solar cells.

Depending on the needed size of the vacuum system, the backing pumps can be oil-lubricated rotary vane pumps like the SOGEVAC product family or dry vacuum pumps like the DRYVAC or SCREWLINE families. To achieve higher pumping speeds the backing pumps are often combined with Roots pumps like our broad RUVAC portfolio.

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