Institute for Technical Physics

Vacuum technology and integrated process development

The perspective of an integrated development of a vacuum process is oriented towards the complete process resulting from the interaction of its components. Starting with the requirements on the vacuum task, all subsystems are being fine-tuned to each other. Optimisation potentials and sensitivities of the sub-systems to changes in neighbouring systems are derived from the overall process. Due to the strong links between the sub-systems (plant-life-cycle), a holistic interdisciplinary approach in terms of technology and methodology is applied.

An iterative design evolution must not only be based on highly efficient models, it must also be validated and parameterized by using experimental data from different levels of the process hierarchy. Experimental data are indispensable to distinguish between competing models, to identify models and to quantify uncertainties of model predictions. The research structure within the department is therefore set up and developed in such a way that elementary processes and unit functions are primarily addressed.

Our competence

We have a holistic view on the process development of vacuum processes, which allows us to identify the main influences and to map them theoretically or experimentally.

The goal of integrated process development is

  • to discuss research and development problems in the individual specialist areas,
  • identify knowledge gaps that hinder the solution of technical problems, and
  • to make recommendations and advise on measures to close these gaps.

Long-term projects

  1. Development of a simulator for the fuel cycle of the DEMO fusion power plant on the Aspen Plus platform
  2. Systematic characterisation of the outgassing rates of materials in vacuum.
  3. Development of new vacuum applications for the new generation of high capacity getter materials.

Research infrastructure

  1. Facilities to characterise NEG materials at lab scale (facility PEGASOS) or large scale (facility TIMO)
  2. Facility OMA to measure vacuum outgassing.
  3. Vacuum lab

Involved staff