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Economic OEM Mass Flow Controller for PVD Applications


Jun 01, 2012
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer
Written By:
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer

Those of you who work in the solar energy and semiconductor industry will be familiar with physical vapor deposition (PVD) or sputtering that is commonly used for creating films of material on a substrate in the solar energy and semiconductor industry. In the PVD process, a negatively charged electrode is slowly disintegrated by molecular bombardment. […]

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How to Achieve Vapor Mass Flow Control with a Thermal Mass Flow Controller


Jan 09, 2012
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer
Written By:
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer

I often get asked to describe the most challenging flow meter applications that Sierra has successfully handled. One that comes to mind is how we used a capillary thermal mass flow controller (designed to measure gas) to accurately control a liquid used in the semiconductor industry at extremely low pressure differentials of about 10 Torr. […]

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Trends in Flow Meter Electronics


Nov 17, 2011
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer
Written By:
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer

I often get asked, what are the trends in Flow Instrumentation Electronics? The answer is that some of the trends are going towards having multi-parameter outputs, more feature richness, and more and more digital communication options available while still being able to perform the basic functions. This is accomplished by making more modular and configurable […]

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Three Easy Steps to Leak Testing with a Gas Mass Flow Meter


Nov 15, 2011
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer
Written By:
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer

Leak detection can be easy, but in the “good old days” (which some of us may still be living in today), leaks were time consuming to find and fix. Let’s compare how to find a leak the hard way, and then I’ll show you how easy it can be to automate the process with a mass flow meter. Fixing a […]

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Transit-Time Ultrasonic Flow Meters Don’t Need to be Expensive


Sep 28, 2011
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer
Written By:
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer

When you think about clamp-on, transit-time ultrasonic flowmeters, the first thought that usually comes to mind is the value that stems from the convienence and accuracy for liquid flow measurment–no pipe cutting, very high accuracy and reliability, no hassles.  But, that value does come at a price, and it is worth it if you take into account […]

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Capillary Thermal, How Exactly Does it Work?


Jul 20, 2011
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer
Written By:
Mark Blackbourn, Engineer

I get many questions from customers about how a Capillary Thermal Mass Flow Meter, like our Smart-Trak 100, works. So, I decided to do a brief overview of the principle of operation to accompany the video below. https:// The total flow through a tube or piping system enters the CTFM where it passes through a Laminar Flow Element […]

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