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FAQ ITO-Coatings

Frequently asked questions in regards to our ITO-coated glass products

To the data sheet of our ITO-coatings


Here you will find our FAQ in regards to our ITO-coated materials and to ITO-coatings in general.
If you can't find an answer to a question you might have, please feel free to contact us with your question. We will be pleased to share all available information with you.

What is the micro roughness of your ITO-coatings?

Do you stock any standard dimensions?

Can you do custom dimensions?

What is more economical, round or rectangle shapes?

Can you do custom square resistances?

What is the typical lead time for custom sized parts?

Can you coat other substrate materials than listed?

Can you coat my supplied substrates?

Can you coat plastics with ITO?

Why can't I define both, the film thickness and the square resistance?

What is the technical difference between your CEC-S and CEC-P coatings?

Can you provide a bus bar or contacting material?

Do you make ready-made heatable windows with wires connected?

Do you make ITO-coated microscope slides?

Do you have a price-list for your ITO-coatings?

What is the thinnest possible substrate?

What is the transmission specification of your ITO-coatings?

Do you have transmission or reflection curves?

Can you do index matched ITO (IMITO)?

What is the lowest and the highest square resistance you can coat?

Where is the SiO2 layer located and what is it good for?

Does the SIO2 layer of the CEC-S and CEC-P coatings add extra cost?

Why are there coating types with an undefined (n/a) ITO film thickness?

Do you offer patterned ITO-coatings or patterning or masking services?

All given details and specifications are mean reference values and are not guaranteed.
In addition, please consider our "Notes on technical specifications"














































































































Q: What is the micro roughness of your ITO-coatings?

A: It is not practicable to control the surface of each single ITO-coated part at a nanometer level. We therefore generally do not make a specification on the micro roughness. If we would specify the micro roughness, we would have to do a 100% surface inspection on a nanometer level with an atomic force microscope (AFM). This would mean that we would have to inspect the full surface area of each single of the many million ITO-coated substrates and windows we make. This is of course not feasible.
Nevertheless, many of our customers are successfully using our ITO-coated materials for applications where the micro roughness is critical. For some of our coatings of the CEC-P and CEC-S Series, we have some typical AFM surface roughness test reports available. We will be pleased to share these test results with you on request. Again, please consider that these measurements are just snapshots that were randomly taken from a random batch and they do not present a specification.

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Q: Do you stock any ITO-coated substrates with standard dimensions?

A: A great advantage to our customers is, that we as an industrial manufacturing company are not limited to standard dimensions like most trading companies are. Almost every customer needs different dimensions and it often is a great advantage to the user to get the dimension really required for the application. To be able to be quick even at custom sizes, we permanently make many different standard ITO-coated materials which you can find in the chart here. Please choose a material you are interested in and pick an available substrate thickness from the chart, enter a size and fill them into our request form. Again, you are absolutely free to specify the dimensions! You typically will receive individual quotation the same day we receive your request. Typical lead time for custom precision CNC-cut parts made from stock materials is 1-2 weeks, provided the tolerances or required manufacturing steps or extreme production load do not make a longer lead time necessary.


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Q: Can you do custom sizes?

A: Yes of course! Please just send us your inquiry and we will return a quotation for your custom sized part usually the same day we receive your request.


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Q: What is more economical, a round or rectangle shape?

A: Generally said, rectangle shapes are more economical to make than round parts, especially at small quantities. At large and very large quantities, this cost difference gets significantly smaller but will never be on the same level. Of course this depends on the details but a rectangle part with moderate tolerances compared to a round part with same tolerances will typically be more economical.


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Q: Can you do ITO with custom conductivity?

A: Yes. This however is only possible on a "per coating run" basis. This means it is only possible if the quantity is large enough for a custom coating run. It is not possible or extremely uneconomical at single pieces or at small quantities, resulting in an unreasonable piece price, because the total coating run cost remain about the same, no matter whether one piece or the full run is coated. If you want to know what quantity will be required for a custom coating run, please send us your detailed request and we let you know what is possible or reasonable.


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Q: What is the typical lead time for custom sized ITO-coated windows or substrates?

A: This depends on the tolerances and complexity of your parts and of course on the required manufacturing steps. Not at least, it also depends on our production load. To give you an example, for precision CNC-cut square or rectangle parts with moderate tolerances at normal production load, a typical lead time is only less than a week!


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Q: Can you coat other substrate materials with ITO than the ones listed?

A: Yes! This however is possible only on a "per coating run" basis . The substrate material must be a suitable glass though. We usually do not coat plastics. However there are some exceptions depending on the technical performance of some plastic material. In case you want to get a special glass or plastic custom coated, please contact us with your inquiry and we will let you know what is possible.


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Q: Can you coat my supplied substrates wit ITO?

A: Yes, generally we can custom coat supplied material. A requirement for this is, that your substrates are not already coated with any other coating and that the substrate properties are suitable. Please send us your inquiry with all details. Please consider that this requires at least a full coating run.


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Q: Can you coat plastics with ITO?

A: We do not coat plastics usually. However there are exceptions depending on the technical performance of the plastic material. Please contact us with your inquiry.


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Q: Why can't I define both, the film thickness and the square resistance of an ITO-coating?

A: The square resistance of an fully oxidized ITO-coating depends on the film thickness and vice versa.


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Q: What is the technical difference between your CEC-S and CEC-P coatings?

A: The only difference between the CEC-P and CEC-S coatings is, that the substrates used for the CEC-P ITO-coatings are additionally mechanically polished. This allows an improved total thickness variation and a better mechanical flatness, but at the same time it slightly increases the surface micro roughness. This is resulting from the normal micro scratches on nm level that are occurring when a glass is mechanically polished. In other words, generally the CEC-S coatings have a better (lower) surface micro roughness, and the CEC-P coatings show a better TTV and optical flatness.


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Q: Can you provide a bus bar or contacting material?

A: We do not provide bus bars. However, as a special service, we supply electrically conductive adhesive copper tape exclusively to the customers of our ITO-coated materials.


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Q: Do you make ready-made heatable windows with wires connected?

A: No, we don't. We have many customers though, who use our ITO-coated materials to built their own heatable window or heatable microscope slide.


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Do you make ITO-coated microscope slides?

A: Yes we do! We can make any size of ITO-coated microscope slides you want. Please choose an ITO-coated material you are interested in from the chart here, select an available substrate thickness and please let us know the size and quantity of the microscope slide you are interested in. We will send you a detailed quotation in return usually the same day we receive your request.


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Q: Do you have a price-list for your ITO-coatings?

A: No. As a manufacturing company we are not limited to standard sizes and we do not have a price-list like trading companies have. This is of great advantage to you as our valued customer, because you are absolutely free to specify the dimensions exactly as you need them for your special application. Please choose an ITO-coated material you are interested in from the chart here, select an available substrate thickness and just let us know the size and quantity you will need. We will send you a detailed quotation in return usually the same day we receive your request.


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Q: What is the thinnest possible substrate thickness?

A: The thinnest substrate thickness that can be coated is approximately 0,15mm. We always make an ITO-coated thin glass called CEC020T with 20 Ohms/sq. which you should consider when you are in need of ITO-coated thin glass. Please see our chart here for all available thicknesses and send us individual size request. Also custom coatings are possible, provided that the quantity is large enough for a coating run.


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Q: What is the transmission specification of your ITO-coatings?

A: This depends on the square resistance and therefore on the film thickness, the substrate material and on how the refractive indexes of the glass match to the refractive index of the ITO-film. You can find typical transmission curves of many of our coatings here. If you need a typical transmission curve for a coating not listed there, please do not hesitate to contact us and let us know what coating you want the transmission information for.


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Q: Do you have transmission or reflection curves of your ITO-coatings available?

A: Yes. You can find typical transmission curves of many of our coatings here. Also we have additional information on the transmission or reflection of many of our ITO-coated materials, which we can provide to you on request.


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Q: Can you do IMITO (Index matched ITO)?

A: Yes. This however is only possible on a "per coating run" basis for finished parts and only on request. This means the quantity must be large enough for a custom coating run. It is not possible or extremely uneconomical at single pieces or at small quantities. Please also consider, that the top layer of an IMITO-coating cannot be ITO, because an layer on top of the ITO is required to match the refractive indexes. This means, the ITO cannot be contacted unless the layer(s) on top are removed or partial areas are left without the top coating.


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Q: What is the lowest and the highest square resistance you can coat?

A: Generally the lowest square resistance is around 5 Ohms per square and the highest is about 1000 Ohms per square. We always make many standard coatings in this range (please see chart here). If you need another square resistance, please send us your inquiry.


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Q: Where is the SiO2 passivation layer located and what is it good for?

A: The SiO2 layer is located between the glass substrate and the ITO-thin film. In other words, it separates the Indium Tin Oxide from the glass surface. This quartz layer is only some tens of nanometers thick and increases the electrical insulation. At the same time it minimizes leaching of alkali-oxides from the glass into liquid crystals, which is critical for display applications. Only our CEC-S and CEC-P coatings have a SiO2 passivation layer. All other coatings do not have a passivation layer. The SiO2 layer of our CEC-S and CEC-P coatings does NOT add any extra cost to our ITO-coated end product as it is an integrated process.


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Q: Does the SIO2 layer of the CEC-S and CEC-P coatings add extra cost?

A: The SiO2 layer does NOT add any extra cost to the ITO-coated end product as it is an integrated process for the CEC-S and CEC-P coatings. It just increases the technical product quality without increasing the cost. The CEC-S and CEC-P coatings are our most economical ITO-coatings although they are the only ITO-coatings with a standard passivation layer.


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Q: Why are there coatings with an undefined (n/a) ITO film thickness in the chart?

A: All coatings without defined ITO-film thickness are made in a small coating machine. Those ITO-coatings are mainly based on "exotic" substrate materials and we don't make them at very large quantities like our CEC-S or CEC-P coatings for example. In the small coating machine, only the transmission and the square resistances can be controlled. The film thickness is a function of these parameters. It is not a process controlled parameter. We therefore do not make exact calls on the film thickness of these coatings.


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Q: Do you offer patterned ITO-coatings or patterning or masking services?

A: Sorry, no we do not offer patterned ITO-coatings or masking services at all. Our customers usually do the patterning themselves by etching away some of the ITO. For some of our coatings we give out typical, non-binding etching recommendations. If you are interested in obtaining these, please contact us.


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