Dual-Zone Pressure Controller (DPC)

photo - Dual-Zone Pressure Controller (DPC)

The Dual-Zone Pressure Controller (DPC) is a highly integrated closed-loop pressure control subsystem. It consists of an inlet pneumatic shut-off valve, two independent channels of pressure control with mass flow metering, and a vacuum outlet. Each pressure control channel of the DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller consists of a pressure sensor, a control valve, and a mass flow meter, similar to the MKS 649 Pressure Controller with Integral Mass Flow Meter.

The DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller has been designed to reduce the overall cost of ownership of pressure control subsystems for backside wafer cooling, specifically for the latest two-zone electrostatic chucks (Figure 1).

Features & Benefits

Fully Integrated Solution

  • Complete backside wafer cooling subsystem in a compact package
  • Two independent channels of pressure control, each with mass flow metering
  • Available with Analog or DeviceNet communications

Smaller, Simpler, Lower Cost

  • With single package integration, size and complexity are greatly reduced
  • Less plumbing and cabling required
  • Can be used in any application requiring independent pressure control and mass flow metering to two distinct volumes

Advanced Process Control

  • Pressure measurement accuracy of ±0.5% of setpoint
  • Tunable response for fast time to setpoint without overshoot
  • Control stability of ±0.1% of setpoint

figure 1 - Two Zone Backside Wafer Cooling
Figure 1 - Two Zone Backside Wafer Cooling


As shown in Figure 2, the DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller consists of three sections – an inlet subassembly, a pressure control/flow metering subassembly, and an outlet subassembly. Pressurized helium gas is fed into the inlet subassembly. A pneumatic valve is then opened and the gas flow is split to two channels.

figure 2 - DPC Functional Schematic
Figure 2 - DPC Functional Schematic

In the pressure control section, MKS Baratron® Capacitance Manometers measure pressure for each of the two zones. These pressures are compared to the pressure setpoints and an appropriate signal adjusts the position of the solenoid control valve to bring actual pressures into agreement with the setpoints. At the same time, mass flow is monitored on each channel by MKS Mass-Flo® meters calibrated for helium, which is the typical gas used for backside wafer cooling.

Downstream of the pressure control section of the DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller, the outlet subassembly directs flow to the electrostatic chuck and provides a controlled “bleed” to vacuum through fixed orifices.

The purpose of the bleed is to insure that the pressure control system is not “dead-ended”. Since leak past the wafer is typically very low, the controlled bleed provides additional pressure relief for faster response to setpoint. Two different orifice sizes are used depending on the Full Scale range of the flow sensors. A smaller orifice size is used on DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller units with 10 and 20 sccm FS flow sensors, and a larger orifice size is used on DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controllers with 50 and 100 sccm FS flow sensors. The smaller orifice size delivers 3.5 ±1.5 sccm He at a control pressure of 9 Torr to the dump line. The larger orifice is sized to flow 13.0 ±3.0 sccm He at a control pressure of 14 Torr to the dump line.

Communication and Control

Both analog and DeviceNet versions of the DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller are available. For the analog version fo the DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller, power is supplied at ±15 VDC. The pressure setpoint and readout signals are 0-10 VDC and the flow sensor readout signal is 0-5 VDC. Ten-position gain and integral (P&I) term rotary switches provide a wide dynamic range for tuning pressure control performance. P&I switches are provided for each channel for independent tuning.

The digital DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller features digital control electronics and DeviceNet-compliant communication. The DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller DeviceNet profile for each channel basically adds an S-Analog Sensor object for mass flow sensing to the Process Control Valve object. Each channel has its own distinct MAC ID that is user-settable by two switches per DeviceNet specification. To optimize pressure control performance, users may adjust gain, integral and differential (P, I, D) constants for each channel using the DPC Dual-Zone Pressure Controller's DeviceNet communications protocol.


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Documents & Downloads:

DPC data sheet
DPC EDS file

Need help?

Contact an Applications Specialist by sending an email to MKS Instruments, or call 978-645-5500.