Robust Arduino controlled spin coater using a novel and simple gravity chuck design
Spin coaters offer an invaluable method of thin film fabrication. Various implementations, both proprietary and open-source exist, offering vacuum and gravity samples chucks. These implementations vary in their reliability, ease-of-use, cost, and versatility. Here we present a novel easy-to-use open-source gravity-chuck type spin coater with minimal points of failure at a material cost of around 100 USD (1500 ZAR). The unique chuck design makes use of interchangeable brass plate sample masks, each specific to a sample size, these can be made with basic skills and common hand tools. In comparison, replacement chucks for commercial alternatives can cost as much as the entire spin coater we present. Open-source hardware such as this provides an example for individuals in the field on the design and development of hardware where reliability, cost, and flexibility are most important, as is the case for many institutions in developing countries.