CO2 Composite Spray™ technology combines the cleaning (or cooling) power of microscopic crystals of solid carbon dioxide with patented coaxial jet spray cleaning processes to effectively remove contaminants (i.e., particles, thin films, heat) from the exterior or exposed surfaces of a product (or tool). CO2 Composite Spray™ cleaning technology mimics the chemistry, control, and performance characteristics of the tried-and-true fluorocarbon solvent spray processes of the past. The latest CO2 composite spray cleaning systems provide fluorocarbon-like spray chemistry, productivity and performance, and are equipped with a real-time photometric spray analysis technology for monitoring and maintaining the quality of the CO2 spray chemistry in-situ. These enabling aspects allow manufacturers to literally go back in time to unconstrain the precision cleaning process. With CO2 composite spray technology, manufacturing engineers can re-think and re-tool assembly operations previously designed and implemented around wet cleaning processes.
For example, CO2 composite spray cleaning allows for increased complexity of the hardware (i.e., the presence of dissimilar materials and multiple components on an assembly) prior to cleaning which decreases the number of cleaning steps. Moreover, due to exceptional material and process compatibility, CO2 composite sprays can be used within a manufacturing tool or on the production line to provide pre-clean, clean-during, or post-clean processing capabilities.
Shown in the figure above, a CO2 composite spray system comprises six integrated components: process fluids supply, CO2 spray generator, CO2 composite spray applicator, CO2 composite spray analyzer, process additives, and environmental control to manage airborne particles and surface cleaning effluents (contaminant aerosols).
The CO2 composite spray cleaning process can meet a variety of cleanliness requirements, ranging from visually clean to more rigorous quality standards requiring sophisticated test methods such as Particle Counting, Non Volatile Residue (NVR) analysis, FTIR or Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM).