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The vacuum "vacuums" the air out it, which basically means there are no air molecules that are in the experiment, so all electrons that are ejected will go to the detector instead of interacting with air molecules.
Vacuum is basically just referring to an enclosed sapce, so for example space is also a vacuum. We need a vacuum though because without it, the experiment will have other external forces interfering like the presence of air molecules. Because the photo electric effect centers on the idea of electrons being ejectec by the force of photons, we need photons to only interact with electrons instead of molecules.
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