Manufacturing Your X-Ray Source Components
Brazing of Anode Bodies
X-ray anode bodies and heatsinks are brazed in the vacuum furnace at Torr Scientific. Capabilities include joining various materials including stainless steel to copper and copper to silver and assembly of water-cooled configurations. CVD diamond wafers can be incorporated for customers requiring highly efficient cooling for small spot or high power X-ray applications.
Finite Element Analysis – of CVD diamond heat spreaders for more power
Diamond has thermal conductivity up to 5 times that of copper.
CVD (chemical vapour deposited) diamond is grown in a reactor,
and is more affordable than gemstone diamonds.
FEA has been used at Torr Scientific to model the complex
effects that microstructure can have on the thermal
properties of CVD diamond, and how to best deploy CVD
diamond as a heat spreader in X-ray anodes.
Welding and Leak-Testing
The anode assemblies are TIG (tungsten inert gas) welded by our highly experienced engineers. The assemblies are then cleaned, inspected, and helium leak tested. Helium, being one of the very smallest gas species, makes the leak test highly sensitive and ensures UHV (ultra-high vacuum) performance. Water cooled anodes are additionally tested for water flow.
Sputter Coating of X-ray Anodes
The newly commissioned second cleanroom at Torr Scientific is dedicated to the coating and assembly of X-ray source anode components. The anodes are sputter coated with a metallic anode film to customer requirements, typically being tungsten, aluminium and magnesium. Sputtering can provide a dense well-adhered film if the correct conditions are employed. We optimize our sputter processes by examining fracture cross sections of the coatings in our scanning electron microscope.
White Light Interferometer – inspection of
thickness and finish
Torr Scientific use a Zygo ZeGage white light interferometer for precise assessment of coating thicknesses, surface finish and grain size. The technique requires little or no sample preparation and is non-destructive. Advanced data processing software allows filtering of curvature for quantitative assessment of surface roughness, or filtering of fine details to allow more precise measurements of overall form. Data stitching allows measurements of larger areas covering tens or even hundreds of millimetres.
Cathode filaments are formed and assembled in cleanroom conditions, prior to incorporation into X-ray source assemblies. For higher electron emission, thoriated tungsten may be used. Alternatively, Torr Scientific can apply a thoria coating to a formed filament.
The glass shop at Torr Scientific manufactures housings for vacuum and X-ray devices, feedthrough bases incorporating glass-to-metal seals and glass vacuum optics sealed into metal holders. Glass-to-metal seals may incorporate regions of grading from one glass to another, to reduce thermal expansion mismatch. Our glasswork is used in high power X-ray devices, ionizing radiation detectors and vacuum gauges.