LED Ultraviolet exposure box

Posted on Apr 30, 2012

The LEDs are OSSV53E1A from OptoSupply and they have an 140° angle. This means that the first plane with uniform density can be obtained at a shorter distance from the LED, for a given spacing between LEDs which means smaller height for the board. Their peak wavelength is 405nm, which is higher than recommended by the boards' manufacturer. Results showed they emit sufficient UV light in the responsive spectrum of the photo resist to allow for a perfect exposure. I wanted to use a common voltage so 3 LEDs in series with a 91? resistor are connected to 12V to ensure a 20mA current.

LED Ultraviolet exposure box
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The final setup will contain a LM317 for stabilizing as I don't plan on using my variable regulated supply all the time. There is another reason for this, due to the non linear nature of the LEDs, varying 12V with +/-5% creates much larger current variations which influences the required time. Putting a regulator on the box simply allows more flexibility in choosing the power supply. On the bottom board I have added red LEDs. These LEDs help me align the top and bottom films. I have used low brightness, cheap, matte LEDs as I have to look into them when aligning the films. Connection is similar, 3 LEDs in series with a 220? resistor, except for the last row which contains 2 LEDs and a 330? resistor. These are not really necessary, aligning the films can be done in a dim ambient light. For safety reasons and extra functionality I added a switch to turn off the UV light when the box opens, turn on the red light and stop the timer. This makes the box more high tech and gives it a professional behavior. LED spacing I used nuts glued on the interior walls of the box to hold the bottom 4 mm thick plexiglas panel. The choice was simply of what was easily available: nuts. Don't use normal glass as it blocks ultraviolet light. There is no top panel mounted, because it is part of the aligning procedure: I put the first film on the bottom, then the board and the second film is taped to a smaller piece of plexiglas....

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