Abstract: In the operation of sputtering targets, whether the targets are planar or cylindrical, magnetically enhanced or not, they are provided with a detectable material underlying the coating material carried on the target. As the target becomes depleted, the underlying material becomes deposited on the substrate and is then detected when appearing on the substrate. The detectable material can be a radioactive substance, an electrical characteristic detectable substance such as iron, an optically detectable substance such as copper or gold which is highly reflective, or a fluorescent substance. The target may have a thinner section of coating material immediately above the detectable material or the detectable material may be deeply imbedded in the target where the target is a solid substance and is water cooled from the opposed surface.
Abstract: A method and apparatus for changing rotatable magnetron sputtering targets is disclosed in which the new target is contained within one of a pair of holding chambers which can be alternately moved into alignment with the axis of the target contained in the sputtering chamber. The empty receiving chamber is aligned with the target to be removed and the target is withdrawn into the receiving chamber after both holding or receiving chambers have been pumped down to a vacuum near that of the sputtering chamber. With the old target in one of the chambers, both chambers are shifted to place the receiving chamber with the new target into position in alignment with the axis of the sputtering chamber. The new target is inserted into the sputtering chamber from the holding chamber without loss of vacuum in the sputtering chamber so that sputtering can be resumed without being contaminated by changing targets.