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US6003674: Method and apparatus for packing contaminant-sensitive articles and resulting package


Filing Information

Inventor(s) Ray Gene Brooks ·
Assignee(s) None listed in document.
Attorney/Agent(s) Geoffrey A. Mantooth ·
Primary Examiner Paul T. Sewell ·
Assistant Examiner Nhan T. Lam ·
Application Number US8645559
Filing date 05/13/1996
Issue date 12/21/1999
Predicted expiration date 05/13/2016
U.S. Classifications 206/711  · 206/454  ·
International Classifications B65D 8500  ·
Kind CodeA
International Classifications 206449;454;711;723;722;832;833 ·
4 Claims, No Drawings


A method, apparatus and package for packaging contaminant-sensitive articles such as semi-conductor wafers on shock absorbers in a sealed rigid plastic enclosure such as a box or the like which may be enclosed within another sealed enclosure wherein the sealed enclosures are each provided with a self-sealing member together with a hollow needle connected to a source of purging gas and a vacuum source for selectively piecing one or more of the self-sealing members to communicate the gas and vacuum sources with a selected one of the enclosures interiors for purging and/or evacuating the enclosures interiors to remove ion contaminants, moisture, oxygen, plastic particles, etc. whereby corrosive activity on the articles is eliminated and the sealed condition of both enclosures is maintained after the contaminants, etc. are removed and the needle is withdrawn thereby providing increased productive yields of such articles being processed between manufacturing steps by reducing or substantially eliminating environmental variations.

Independent Claims | See all claims (4)

  1. 1. An apparatus for storing contaminant sensitive articles in a contaminant-free environment comprising: in combination, a rigid enclosure of plastic material having a plurality of walls defining an interior, said enclosure comprising a pair of sections adapted for interfitting engagement to form said enclosure, means for supporting a plurality of articles in said enclosure interior, means for sealing said enclosure with said articles therein, one of said enclosure walls having an opening, a self-sealing member mounted on the exterior of said wall in overlying relationship with said enclosure opening for maintaining said enclosure in said sealed condition, a tubular instrument structured and arranged to convey fluid therethrough, said self-sealing member being structured and arranged to be penetrated from an exterior side by said tubular instrument so as to communicate with said enclosure interior through said enclosure opening with subsequent resealing of said self-sealing member when said tubular instrument is withdrawn to maintain said enclosure in said sealed condition, a tubular guide sleeve mounted on said one enclosure wall in overlying coaxial relationship with said self-sealing member, an outer end wall on said guide sleeve having a central aperture for guiding the penetration of said self-sealing member by said tubular instrument, said tubular instrument comprises a hollow needle, said needle having an inlet end and an outlet end and including a handle having a central bore, means for supporting said needle in said handle central bore with said outlet end extending outwardly from said handle for penetration of said self-sealing member.

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