The Doctor has always been intrigued by the innovation and design capability of engineers. Nowhere is this better illustrated than in equipment used for diffusion-bonding applications. These designs demonstrate ingenuity as well as the ability to adapt conventional vacuum units into a technology with proven performance. Let’s learn more.
Multiple stacked component layers (Fig. 1) are typical in vacuum hot-press applications (Fig. 2), which utilize diffusion bonding. Since many metals are easily oxidized, the process is commonly run in specialized vacuum furnaces operating in the range of 10-4 to 10-6 Torr or in a hydrogen partial-pressure atmosphere. Hot-press furnace systems operate at temperatures from 400-1230°C (760-2250°F) with up to 30 tons (60,000 pounds) of compacting force or higher. Specialized systems are capable of extending the maximum operating temperature, pressure and vacuum levels.