Patents Examined by William T. Leader
  • Patent number: 7967969
    Abstract: A substantially uniform layer of a metal is electroplated onto a work piece having a seed layer thereon. This is accomplished by employing a “high resistance ionic current source,” which solves the terminal problem by placing a highly resistive membrane (e.g., a microporous ceramic or fretted glass element) in close proximity to the wafer, thereby swamping the system's resistance. The membrane thereby approximates a constant current source. By keeping the wafer close to the membrane surface, the ionic resistance from the top of the membrane to the surface is much less than the ionic path resistance to the wafer edge, substantially compensating for the sheet resistance in the thin metal film and directing additional current over the center and middle of the wafer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2011
    Assignee: Novellus Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Steven T. Mayer, Jonathan D. Reid
  • Patent number: 7964081
    Abstract: An apparatus for plating a magnetic film on a substrate includes: a track including a plurality of stopping points along the track; a permanent magnet placed on the track such that the permanent magnet can be moved along the track towards and away from the stopping points; at least one plating tank positioned on the stopping point; and a removable high permeability iron flux concentrator inserted into gaps between the substrate and inside walls of the plating tank, substantially surrounding the substrate and extending around and under the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2011
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Matteo Flotta, Lubomyr Taras Romankiw, Xiaoyan Shao, Steven Erik Steen, Bucknell Chapman Webb
  • Patent number: 7947161
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for establishing more uniform deposition across one or more faces of a workpiece in an electroplating process. The apparatus employs eductors in conjunction with a flow dampener member and other measures to provide a more uniform current distribution and a more uniform metal deposit distribution as reflected in a coefficient of variability that is lower than conventional processes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2011
    Assignee: Faraday Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Lawrence E. Gebhart, E. Jennings Taylor
  • Patent number: 7935240
    Abstract: The present invention generally relates to apparatus and methods for plating conductive materials on a substrate. One embodiment of the present invention provides an apparatus for plating a conductive material on a substrate. The apparatus comprises a fluid basin configured to retain an electrolyte, a contact ring configured to support the substrate and contact the substrate electrically, and an anode assembly disposed in the fluid basin, wherein the anode assembly comprises a plurality of anode elements arranged in rows.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2011
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Saravjeet Singh, Manoocher Birang, Nicolay Y. Kovarsky, Aron Rosenfeld
  • Patent number: 7906004
    Abstract: A high-quality oxide film which is free from a pinhole and surface roughing caused by anodic oxidation and which has surface smoothness on a surface of a material to be treated containing a metal as a principal component. An electrolyte solution which is used for forming an oxide film on a surface of a material to be treated containing a metal as a principal component by anodic oxidation, the electrolyte solution containing a non-aqueous solvent containing an alcoholic hydroxyl group and having 4 or more carbon atoms as a main solvent. This non-aqueous solvent preferably contains two or more alcoholic hydroxyl groups and is especially preferably one or two or more members selected from the group consisting of diethylene glycol, triethylene glycol and polyethylene glycol. A method of forming an oxide film including a step of anodically oxidizing a material to be treated containing a metal as a principal component in this electrolyte solution.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2011
    Assignee: Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation
    Inventors: Fumikazu Mizutani, Toshiaki Sakakihara, Yasuhiro Kawase, Makoto Ishikawa
  • Patent number: 7837851
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for measuring differential voltages in an electrolyte of an electrochemical plating cell. Current densities are calculated from the measured differential voltages and correlated to thickness values of plated materials. A real time thickness profile may be generated from the thickness values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 25, 2005
    Date of Patent: November 23, 2010
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Manoocher Birang, Nicolay Y. Kovarsky, Bernardo Donoso
  • Patent number: 7833401
    Abstract: A method of forming a component capable of being exposed to a plasma in a process chamber comprises forming a structure comprising a surface and electroplating yttrium, and optionally aluminum or zirconium, onto the surface. Thereafter, the electroplated layer can be annealed to oxide the yttrium and other electroplated species.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2010
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Nianci Han, Li Xu, Hong Shih, Yang Zhang, Danny Lu, Jennifer Y. Sun
  • Patent number: 7820027
    Abstract: An electrolysis cell (10) contains a number of carbon anodes (12) having top, bottom and side surfaces, operating in molten electrolyte (17) in an aluminum electrolysis cell (10), where gas bubbles (28) are generated at the anode surfaces and where alumina particles (20) are added to the top of the molten electrolyte, where the carbon anodes (12) have at least two inward slots (21) passing through the carbon anode (12) along the longitudinal axis 40 of the carbon anode and also passing through only one front surface (25) of the carbon anode, where the height (32) of the slots (21) is from about 45% to 80% of the anodes thickness and the slotted front surfaces (25) are disposed toward the center of the electrolysis cell so that generated gas bubbles (28) are directed to the alumina particles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 2007
    Date of Patent: October 26, 2010
    Assignee: Alcoa, Inc.
    Inventors: Ron D. Barclay, Gary P. Tarcy, Robert B. Hosler, Xiangwen Wang, Jay N. Bruggeman
  • Patent number: 7799185
    Abstract: An improved process and device for the recovery of the minor actinides and the transuranic elements (TRU's) from a molten salt electrolyte. The process involves placing the device, an electrically non-conducting barrier between an anode salt and a cathode salt. The porous barrier allows uranium to diffuse between the anode and cathode, yet slows the diffusion of uranium ions so as to cause depletion of uranium ions in the catholyte. This allows for the eventual preferential deposition of transuranics present in spent nuclear fuel such as Np, Pu, Am, Cm. The device also comprises an uranium oxidation anode. The oxidation anode is solid uranium metal in the form of spent nuclear fuel. The spent fuel is placed in a ferric metal anode basket which serves as the electrical lead or contact between the molten electrolyte and the anodic uranium metal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 21, 2010
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the United States Department of Energy
    Inventor: James L. Willit
  • Patent number: 7780835
    Abstract: A capacitor comprising an aluminum anode and a dielectric layer comprising phosphate doped aluminum oxide and process for making the capacitor. The capacitor has a CV Product of at least 9 ?F?V/cm2 at 250 volts. Furthermore, the capacitor is formed by the process of: forming an aluminum plate; contacting the plate with an anodizing solution comprising glycerine, 0.1 to 1.0%, by weight, water and 0.01 to 0.5%, by weight, orthophosphate; applying a voltage to the aluminum plate and determining an initial current; maintaining the first voltage until a first measured current is no more than 50% of the initial current; increasing the voltage and redetermining the initial current; maintaining the increased voltage until a second measured current is no more than 50% of the redetermined initial current, and continuing the increasing of the voltage and maintaining the increased voltage until a final voltage is achieved.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 22, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2010
    Assignee: Kemet Electronics Corporation
    Inventors: John Tony Kinard, Brian John Melody, David Alexander Wheeler, Duane Earl Stenzinger, Albert Kennedy Harrington
  • Patent number: 7780838
    Abstract: A method of treating metallic workpieces with an anodizing solution, compositions of the anodizing solution and the coatings prepared with this anodizing solution for anodizing metallic surfaces, especially surfaces of magnesium, magnesium alloys, aluminum and aluminum alloys, are disclosed. The compositions are basic aqueous solutions comprising a water-soluble inorganic hydroxide, phosphorus and oxygen containing anions, at least one surfactant and an alkaline buffer based on at least one alkaline hydrolyzed silane, on at least one alcohol showing at least one alkaline radical group or on a mixture of them.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2010
    Assignees: Chemetall GmbH, Alonim Holding Agricultural Cooperative Society Ltd.
    Inventor: Ilya Ostrovsky
  • Patent number: 7776198
    Abstract: A method and apparatus of anodizing a component, preferably aluminum, is disclosed. The component is placed in an electrolyte solution. A number of pulses are applied to the solution and component. Each pulse is formed by a pattern including having three magnitudes. The third magnitude is less, preferably substantially less, than the first and second magnitudes, and all three magnitudes are of the same polarity. The pulse pattern may include alternations between the first and second magnitudes, and following the alternations, the third magnitude. Other patterns may be provided. The solution is in a reaction chamber, along with at least a portion of the component. The fluid enters the reaction chamber from a transport chamber through a plurality of inlets directed toward the component, preferably at an angle of between 60 and 70 degrees. The inlet is preferably the cathode, and the component is the anode, whereby current flows between the cathode and the anode in another embodiment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 17, 2010
    Assignee: Pioneer Metal Finishing, LLC
    Inventor: Jean Rasmussen
  • Patent number: 7776197
    Abstract: An electrode surface coating and method for manufacturing the electrode surface coating comprising a conductive substrate; and one or more surface coatings comprising one or more of the following metals titanium, niobium, tantalum, ruthenium, rhodium, iridium, palladium, or gold, or an alloy of two or more metals, or a combination of two or more alloys or metal layers thereof having an increase in the surface area of 5 times to 500 times of the corresponding surface area resulting from the basic geometric shape.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 17, 2010
    Assignee: Second Sight Medical Products, Inc.
    Inventor: Dao Min Zhou
  • Patent number: 7771578
    Abstract: In a method for production of a corrosion resistant and/or oxidation resistant coating, at least one metal of the platinum group or an alloy thereof is galvanically deposited onto a surface of a substrate, and thereafter the thusly galvanically coated substrate is aluminized. In a first stage of the galvanic deposition process a current magnitude applied for the galvanizing is increased continuously or step-wise beginning from an initial value up to a maximum value, and in a second stage of the galvanic deposition process the current magnitude applied for the galvanizing is maintained constant at the maximum value. The galvanic deposition of the or each metal of the platinum group or the corresponding alloy may be carried out using an open-celled or open-mesh or porous anode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2005
    Date of Patent: August 10, 2010
    Assignee: MTU Aero Engines GmbH
    Inventors: Anton Albrecht, Thomas Dautl, Oemer-Refik Oezcan, Horst Pillhoefer
  • Patent number: 7763158
    Abstract: Mass distribution within programmable surface control devices is controlled by the presence or absence of an electrodeposition of metal and/or metal ions from a solid solution upon application of a suitable electric field. One such programmable surface control device includes a tunable cantilever assembly whose resonant frequency is changed by depositing and dissolving an electrodeposit on a surface of the assembly using an electric field.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 27, 2010
    Assignee: Axon Technologies Corporation
    Inventor: Michael N Kozicki
  • Patent number: 7758738
    Abstract: A method of separating gaseous components, heavier liquid components and lighter liquid components of a stream including the steps of conducting the stream between spaced apart electrodes in a treatment vessel, supplying from a voltage source an AC voltage of at least one base frequency F1 to at least one of the electrodes to establish an electric field within the vessel through which the stream passes, modulating the frequency F1 of the AC voltage at a modulation frequency F2, and withdrawing separated gaseous components from an upper portion of the vessel, heavier stream components from a lower portion of the vessel, and lighter liquid components from an intermediate portion of said vessel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 20, 2010
    Assignee: National Tank Company
    Inventor: Gary W. Sams
  • Patent number: 7731824
    Abstract: Methods and systems for controlling operating conditions of electrolytic cells are provided, particularly aluminum electrolytic cells. The method may includes the steps of measuring offgas temperature from the electrolytic cell, comparing the measured offgas temperature to a target offgas temperature, and completing a predetermined action in response to the comparing step. The predetermined action may include one or more of changing a feed rate of feed materials supplied to the electrolytic cell or inspecting a crust of the electrolytic cell for an undesired condition, such as a crust hole. The system may include an electrolytic cell adapted to contain a molten metal mixture, a hopper adapted to provide feed material to the electrolytic cell, a hood adapted to contain offgas from the electrolytic cell, an exhaust duct interconnected to the hood and containing a thermocouple for measuring offgas temperature, and a control panel for receiving temperature measurements from the thermocouple.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2010
    Assignee: Alcoa Inc.
    Inventors: Michael Lewis Slaugenhaupt, Neal Richard Dando, Gary Paul Tarcy
  • Patent number: 7731831
    Abstract: A composite material useful for the manufacture of a circuit has a support layer, a metal foil layer having opposing first and second sides and a thickness of 15 microns or less and a release layer effective to facilitate separation of the metal foil layer from the support layer, the release layer disposed between and contacting both the support layer and the metal foil layer. A reactive element containing layer, which may be the support layer, effective to react with gaseous elements or compounds to form thermally stable compounds contacts the release layer. The composite material is preferably subjected to a low temperature heat treatment. The combination of the low temperature heat treatment and the reactive element containing layer results in reduced defects including blisters in the copper foil during subsequent processing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2010
    Assignee: GBC Metals, L.L.C.
    Inventors: William L. Brenneman, Szuchain F. Chen
  • Patent number: 7713397
    Abstract: The invention relates to a metal membrane filter (1) and to a method and apparatus for the production thereof. The metal membrane filter (1) has rectilinear, cylindrical filter pores (2), which are arranged statistically distributed on the metal membrane filter surface (3) in a density of from a single filter pore (2) per cm2 up to 107 filter pores (2) per cm2. The average diameter of the filter pores (2) is uniform for all filter pores (2) and is from a few tens of nm up to several micrometers. The metal membrane filter (1) comprises a metal electro-deposited with rectilinear, cylindrical filter pores (2) or a correspondingly electro-deposited metal alloy.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 11, 2010
    Assignee: Gesellschaft fuer Schwerionen forschung mbH
    Inventors: Dobri Dobrev, Johann Vetter, Reinhard Neumann, Norbert Angert
  • Patent number: 7713400
    Abstract: A method of rapidly cooling molten mixtures of alkali metal alloys in which the metal components of said alloys have a wide divergence of melting points that result in separation of the alkali metals during cool down. A calcium-sodium alloy is produced in an electrolysis cell. A method of high pressure atomization of the calcium-sodium alloy and its subsequent rapid cooling produces a calcium nodular particulate that is encased in a sodium flocculant. The material manufactured is used as a nodular electrolytic flocculant reactant in the electrolyte of an alkaline battery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 11, 2010
    Inventor: Edward Milton McWhorter