Coating technologies

Our processes include various coating methods from the gas phase (plasma processes, PVD, CVD processes) and liquid phase (dipping, blade coating, spraying, spin coating) – from laboratory to pilot scale.

Process and system development

The many issues for which coating processes are developed at Fraunhofer IGB are not limited to small laboratory systems. Thanks to the good instrumental equipment, scaling concepts such as continuous treatment of fiber and roll goods can also be implemented.

Offer from process to sample coating

For all coatings we offer the development of a complete process - from the coating, process development and scaling up to the sample coating. We will be pleased to make you an individual offer.

Hydrophobic textile coatings are investigated by means of contact angle measurements.
© Fraunhofer IGB
Hydrophobic textile coatings are investigated by means of contact angle measurements.

Some important properties of materials depend only on the chemistry and topography of its surface. These include, inter alia, wettability, adhesiveness, biocompatibility, adhesion properties or tribological properties. Other important material characteristics such as mechanical properties or processability are determined by the material used. By appropriate surface modifications, it is possible to obtain materials with a new property profile and thus to enable new applications.

We equip surfaces of plastics, ceramics or metals with new properties by applying thin layers or generating defined functions on its surfaces. For this, we use gas phase processes (CVD, PVD, PECVD), wet chemical processes and combined processes.

Gas phase processes (besides plasma)

PVD – Physical vapor deposition

PVD stands for a range of methods for thin film deposition. Atoms or molecules of the material to be deposited are transferred to the substrate via a vacuum without chemical transformation.

CVD – Chemical vapor deposition

Here we have developed a CVD process for parylene coating. Coatings from a few 100 nm to a few 10 µm can be produced. 

 

Roll-to-roll processes: Network for continuous surface functionalization

 

September 7, 2021

Video of R2R-Net Workshop

You can watch the video of the complete R2R-Net workshop from September 7, 2021 on Youtube.

Gas phase processes: plasma technology

Plasma technology represents a focal point of our coating processes from the gas phase. 

Focus on plasma technology

Plasma processing is nowadays one of the most important tools in thin film and surface treatment technologies, and thus plays a key role in manufacturing of many innovative products. For this reason, applications of plasma in surface technology belong to main research interests of the Fraunhofer IGB. The used plasmas are low temperature, low-to-medium pressure ones, enabling a gentle and controlled surface processing.

This way we are able to etch surfaces, e.g. to clean them, or to graft new chemical functionalities onto the surface. It is also possible to polymerize a thin film onto the surface, providing such functions as as scratch-resistance, dirt-repellency, or corrosion protection. By controlling the gas composition, power and other process parameters, a broad spectrum of chemical, physical and biological surface modifications is attainable.

Application areas of plasma technology

 

Functionalization of surfaces

Plasma technology makes it possible to provide surfaces with a variety of properties. This is especially demanded when surfaces are supposed to have different characteristics than the material in volume. Examples are coatings for protection against dirt, scratches or climate and weather influences.

 

Modification of fibers

To equip textiles with certain properties they sometimes do not have to be treated as a whole, but only individual fibers within the fabric. Fraunhofer IGB has the appropriate methods and equipment to process individual fibers and yarns.

Further information

Plasma impact onto surfaces

Advantages of plasma technologies, and properties of plasma produced films

Cost-efficiency of plasma processes

Environmental aspects of plasma technology

Materials and geometries suitable for plasma treatment