Currently the only event of its kind in the UK, this year's Vacuum Expo incorporates the 2nd Vacuum Symposium, organized by the Institute of Physics' Vacuum Group and the RGA Users Group, and a one-day meeting on Nanostructured Metal Oxide Thin Films & Integrated Devices. Vacuum Expo also includes a comprehensive exhibition of the UK's leading vacuum-technology suppliers and will offer opportunities for learning and networking. The two-day Vacuum Symposium will include free technical meetings for the more experienced vacuum user plus free training seminars for those new to vacuum. Day one features sessions focusing on residual gas analysers (RGAs). It will include a presentation from Chris Klepper of the ITER fusion project, who will discuss the development of ITER's diagnostic RGA. Janez Šetina of the Institute of Metals and Technology in Ljubljana, Slovenia, will describe the challenges of RGA calibration, while Dave Seymour of Hiden Analytical Ltd will explain how RGA durability can be improved.

Day two of the Vacuum Symposium will focus on pump technology and will include an introduction to vacuum pumps and their applications by Clive Tunna of Oerlikon Leybold Vacuum. Consultant Ron Reid will speak about the challenges of pushing the limits of ultrahigh-vacuum pressures and Oleg Malyshev of the UK's Daresbury Laboratory will talk about non-evaporable getter pumps.

Training seminars

Available on each day of the symposium will be two half-day training seminars run by specialist vacuum trainer Austin Chambers. One session will deal with the basic principles involved in creating and maintaining a vacuum, while the second will focus on vacuum in practice, covering how vacuum is produced and measured.

The Nanostructured Metal Oxide Thin Films & Integrated Devices meeting will be held on Wednesday 19 October and includes three sessions. The first will cover the synthesis, growth and modelling of films and devices, and will include an invited talk from Sarah Thornley of Plasma Quest Ltd on remote plasma sputtering plus a panel discussion. The second session is on characterizing and monitoring the properties of thin films and devices. It will include an invited talk on the direct optical monitoring of advanced metal-oxide films from Alfons Zoeller of Leybold Optics. The final session is on integrated devices and industrial application, and it will feature an invited talk from Martynas Audronis of Gencoa Ltd.

Vacuum Expo will include representatives from many of the vacuum industry's leading companies and delegates will have access to this extensive pool of vacuum knowledge. New technologies on display at the exhibition will include surface-engineering equipment such as plasma-enhanced chemical-vapour-deposition sources and sputtering systems. Visitors will also be able to get a close look at a variety of pumping technologies, including ion, turbomolecular, rotary-vane and root pumping systems.

A wide range of vacuum-related equipment will be on show, including sample-handling systems, isolation valves and analytical instruments such as mass spectrometers and residual gas analysers. Power supplies and other electronics systems for vacuum systems will also be on display.

The event is held in conjunction with the Photonex exhibition at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry. Photonex is the UK's largest event dedicated to optics, photonics and vision technologies. Photonex also has a conference programme and it includes sessions on optical metrology, biophotonics and the funding and innovation of new technologies.