Product Briefing Outline: Fluid control specialist, Horiba, has introduced a new range of mass flow controllers (MFC) competitively priced to fit the economic and production needs of the photovoltaic manufacturing sector. Manufactured in Japan, under strict quality conditions by HoribaStec, the SEC-N100 Series digital mass flow controller reliably controls the flow of process gases and cleaning gases. Multigas and multirange functions allow the user to configure the desired gas and flow range to increase flexibility and reduce overall costs, for example by decreasing flow controller inventory. Dedicated software makes this easy to do without removing the mass flow controller from the gas panel.
Problem: When a MFC falls out of specification, the process becomes unknown which directly affects the final product quality and yield. The faulty MFC needs to be replaced, which causes logistical and downtime issues, increased risk of contamination and the associated costs. Another issue with a standard MFC is if a process is changed, the MFC may need to be removed from the gas line and exchanged.
Solution: If the process is changed, the N100 series is fully programmable so there is no need to break the line or replace the MFC. The series provides analog/digital, DeviceNet, and PROFIBUS communication functions compatible with solar cell manufacturing equipment. The range offers 1% set point precision and less than 1 second response with an extensive line-up of models with metal or elastomer seals covering flow ranges from 1/10ths of a cubic centimetre per minute up to 200 litres per minute.
Applications: The SEC-N100 Series controls the flow of inert and corrosive gases to all PV making processes for crystalline silicon, thin-film silicon, CIGS, and sensitised dyes.
Platform: Key features of the SEC-N100 Series include: high performance–fast response and setpoint accuracy; fully programmable–reduction of inventory and flexibility to change gas and flow by the user; multiple interfaces–analog 0~5V, analog 0~10V, analog 4~20mA, digital RS-485, DeviceNet, Profibus.
Availability: Currently available.