New Dry Backing Pump Offers Ultra-Clean Operation

New Dry Backing Pump Offers Ultra-Clean Operation

When is a Roots pump more than a Roots pump? When it's an ACP 28 oil free vacuum pump from Alcatel High Vacuum Technology, Annecy. The Alcatel ACP 28 series is designed for oil free, particle free, rough vacuum applications that require vacuum levels ranging from atmospheric pressure to 4 · 10-2 mbar. With a pumping speed of 27 m3 /hr (16 cfm), it is ideal for backing compound turbomolecular pumps and most applications that now rely on oil sealed rotary vane pumps, which have about the same footprint as the ACP 28.

Non-corrosive applications for the standard version of the ACP 28 dry vacuum pump include:

  • load locks
  • electron microscopes
  • residual gas analyzers
  • helium leak detectors
  • sample preparation
  • x-ray spectroscopy
  • UHV systems (particle accelerator beamlines).

A specially designed version, the ACP 28 G, is also available for pumping corrosive gases in trace amounts. This version is recommended for transfer chambers, process monitoring, and focused ion beam applications.

The ACP 28 dry pump employs "Multi-Roots" technology that consists of five Roots stages in series. Figure-eight rotor lobes rotate on two shafts that are geared together with an offset of 90°. The rotors make no contact with each other or the stator. This non-contact pumping-cell design means that there are no wearing parts in the path of the pumped gases and, therefore, no particles to back-stream into a vacuum system.

The rotor-stator clearance has a low conductance value that enables a low ultimate pressure without rotor-to-stator contact. The two shafts that support the rotor lobes are mounted on ball bearings at both ends. These bearings are sealed from the pumping cell by a combination of lip seals and centrifugal disks.

The design includes a canned motor that provides static leak tightness between the pumping cell and the outside of the pump. Because of its frictionless design, the pump runs with extremely long service intervals of 22,000 hr.

The air-cooled ACP 28 series requires universal single-phase, AC power even though a high-speed, three-phase motor drives the pump. A power converter on the pump converts the single-phase power source to the needed higher frequency three-phase signal. This design allows the ACP 28 to run at a consis-tent rotational speed regardless of the power source's voltage or frequency. Voltage selection is determined by the position of a simple slide switch, which enables the pump to be configured easily without hard wiring.

The power converter also allows for remote-control operation, which includes on/off as well as selection of rotational speed. The pump normally operates at 4,800 rpm. This high-speed design enables high-speed pumping from a small package. The remote control also permits three different stand-by speed levels for tailoring of pumping speed and base pressure. Stand-by speed operation also results in lower power consumption and extended bearing liftetime.

The new Alcatel ACP 28 and ACP 28 G pumps provide a combination of oil free, particle free, consistent 27 m3 /hr vacuum performance. This combination enables scientists and engineers to increase the performance of their existing vacuum-dependent systems, as well as consider new research and manufacturing applications that were not practical until now.

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