ConFlat (CF) and Wire Seal UHV Flanges and Fittings
CF and Wire Seal Flanges and Fittings Overview
ConFlat (CF) flanges and fittings and wire seal flanges and fittings are part of the same family of ultra-high vacuum (UHV) components that compress a copper or elastomer gasket between two stainless steel flanges to create a vacuum-tight seal. The CF flange system is more commonly used within the vacuum industry for UHV systems and as such has a much larger standard product offering with faster delivery. Wire seal flanges are desirable for those applications that require flanges larger (> 16.5” diameter) than those available with the CF flange system.
ANCORP CF flanges are manufactured to industry standards and are interchangeable with all other ConFlat style flanges and fittings, while wire seal flanges have no standard dimension specifications. Vacuum component manufacturers endeavor to create interchangeable wire seal flanges; however, it is recommended to purchase a mating set of flanges from one manufacturer to ensure compatibility.
All flanges made by ANCORP are manufactured on state-of-the-art CNC (computer numerical control) lathes to ensure consistency with dimensional tolerances and extremely fine surface finishes. Water-soluble, non-sulfur-based coolants are used during the manufacturing process. The flanges are cleaned in an ultrasonic deionized water-based cleaning system and vacuum packaged free from visible particulates and oils, ready for use in any vacuum application.
CF flanges are available in a full range of sizes (1.33″ to 16.50″ outer diameter), fixed and rotatable styles, and tapped or clearance (through hole) bolt hole configurations. Standard CF flanges are available in 304L, 316LN stainless steel, titanium, and bimetal aluminum and titanium materials. Other materials such as 316L stainless steel and 6061 T6 aluminum are available upon request.
CF Multiport Flanges
CF Multiport flanges, also called cluster flanges, convert a single large flange port into multiple smaller ports at precise angles for attaching instrumentation and other system components.
CF Special Purpose Flanges
A variety of special-purpose CF flanges are available, including zero-length reducer flanges, double-sided flanges, and adaptive flanges with side-mounted ports and NPT connections.
CF Hardware and Seals
CF hardware and seals are used to fasten flanges together to create a vacuum tight seal. CF copper gaskets for UHV use are made from oxygen-free electronic grade and high thermal conductivity copper. FKM fluoroelastomer gaskets are also available for high vacuum use. Copper gaskets are most commonly used with the CF flange system, and, when compressed between the flange knife-edge, provide a vacuum-tight seal capable of achieving ultra-high vacuum pressures and temperatures up to 450°C.
CF fasteners such as bolts, nuts, and washers are made of high tensile strength stainless steel. Available bolt kits include standard hex-head, 12-point, and silver-plated bolts. Nuts are offered with standard or plate nut design. Plate nuts allow adjacent bolts to be tightened into one nut and eliminate the need for a second wrench to hold the nut while tightening.
ANCORP’s CF fittings make up a complete set of modular components that allow customers to make UHV connections in vacuum systems. All ANCORP CF fittings are made with flanges manufactured to industry standard specifications to ensure compatibility with other manufacturer’s flanges.
CF nipples consist of flange(s) on the end of a straight section of tubing. Nipples are used to create a weld-free straight connection within a vacuum system. Available types include full nipples, half nipples, straight reducers, conical reducers, and flexible nipples.
CF elbows are manufactured with a flange on each end of a curved section of tubing to accommodate turns or alignment considerations in a vacuum system. Elbows are offered in four designs: 45° radius, 90° radius, 90° mitered, and 90° mitered high conductance elbows.
CF tees are manufactured with a flange on each end of a “T” shaped section of tubing. Tees accommodate junctions or alignment considerations in a vacuum system. Tees are also used as junction adapters between different tubing sizes or flange types.
CF crosses are manufactured with a flange on each end of an “X” shaped tubing section. Crosses are used to accommodate junctions or alignment considerations in a vacuum system. 4-way, 5-way, and 6-way crosses are available as well as 4-way reducer crosses for junctions of different sizes of vacuum lines.
CF cubes are 6-way fittings machined from a solid piece of steel. Larger cubes and 5 or 6-way crosses are sometimes used as the starting point for a simple vacuum chamber design.
Wire Seal Flange System
The wire seal flange system provides a complete range of flanges to mount with tubing sized 10” to 24” inches outer diameter. The wire seal assembly consists of two flanges, a sealing gasket, and a fastener to compress the seal between the two flanges.
Wire seal flanges are ideal for those applications that require large diameter ports and extremely low vacuum pressure. Common examples are bell jar systems, vacuum furnaces, deposition systems, and environmental test chambers.
To learn more about the wire seal flange system, please visit our Wire Seal Flanges page.