A world-leader in IT hardware and software production recently contacted Belt Technologies for a custom metal belt conveyor solution. They needed a metal conveyor belt to transport aluminum trays of semiconductor substrate through a UV curing and magnetic solidification process.
Semiconductor Substrate Processing Methods Present Unique Design Challenges
The customer would be using a combination of intense UV radiation and a magnetic field to shape and process a semiconductor substrate material. In order to withstand the UV curing and magnetic solidification stages of the semiconductor production process, the conveyor belt would need to be able to withstand high heat and a strong magnetic field.
Stainless steel has a very high tolerance for heat and is typically considered nonmagnetic, but in practice, most stainless steel alloys have low magnetic permeability. Over time, exposure to the strong magnetic field could cause a stainless steel belt to warp. Our engineers were ready to tackle the challenge of providing a metal conveyor belt that would offer long-lasting and accurate product movement without being distorted by exposure to heat or magnetism.
Inconel 718 Provides Low Magnetic Permeability and High Heat Resistance for Optimal Product Quality
The engineering experts at Belt Technologies recommended an endless metal conveyor belt comprised of Inconel 718, a nickel-chromium-based alloy, due to its lower magnetic permeability and high resistance to heat. Like stainless steel, Inconel 718 is clean—it requires no lubrication and generates no particulates. It does not build up static electricity and would provide the perfect surface on which aluminum trays containing the semiconductor substrate could be transported.
Two sets of holes were laser cut into the Inconel belt to assist with the placement of the trays. A set of silicone v-guides were included in the design of the conveyor to provide force tracking of the belt. We also supplied the customer with shaft holders and shafts, enabling them to install the belt on their existing conveyor frame.
The Design Experts at Belt Technologies Provide Customized and Automated Manufacturing Solutions
Our engineers have the experience and knowledge to assist manufacturers with developing custom manufacturing solutions to the most challenging automation obstacles. We thrive on creating conveyor systems that meet the unique needs of our customers and we are happy to provide engineering assistance to help with any modifications or fabricate special components that may be required.
Does your product present a unique manufacturing challenge? Belt Technologies engineers can help. Contact the design experts today and let us help you find the ultimate automation solution!