When Form Meets Function –
Aurora plasma system wins GOOD DESIGN™ award

Chicago, December 2012. Plasmatreat’s innovative low-pressure plasma unit AURORA has been awarded one of the most prestigious global distinctions for industrial product design granted by The Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design in cooperation with the European Centre for Architecture, Art, Design and Urban Studies. Annually top designers from all over the world apply for this award in different categories. Appliciants from 38 nations were honored last year.

The award which goes by the simple name of GOOD DESIGN™ is not only the world's oldest design prize but also one of the most coveted. Founded in Chicago in 1950 by world-famous architects Eero Saarinen, Charles and Ray Eames, and Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., the program honors international designers and manufacturers for advancing innovative product and graphic design. The jury for GOOD DESIGN bases their decisions on criteria that not only measure product appearance and aesthetic appeal but just as well innovation, form, materials, construction, concept, function, utility, and sustainability.

For German AURORA designer Knut Braake, owner of Braake Design, Stuttgart, the prize is another jewel in a list of design awards for his team. “The industrial design of this product not only reflects the overall corporate design ethos, but also embodies core functional concepts, such as the mobility and flexibility to adapt to very varied production conditions,” explains Braake. The AURORA combines forward-thinking design with innovative low-pressure surface modification technology to create an outstanding product with clear product identity and recognition. Braake Design has supported the development from the preliminary design stage right through to the construction of the housing. What conventionally was an industrial looking tool with visible components, knobs, dials and toggles, unnecessary for the operators day-to-day use, has now become a piece of functional beauty: the clear, aesthetically designed unit housing organizes the system components inside to offer the user an easy to use ergonomic production tool.

The gently rounded shape with contrasting curves and cubes houses the graphical touchscreen user interface and features large mineral glass doors which offer a clear view of the surface modification chamber. Appealing contrasting materials and fine attention to detail on the outside of the unit hint at the quality and performance contained within.

The technical aspects

With the acquisition of the Californian company PTS (Plasma Technology Systems) in 2011, Plasmatreat had broadened the surface modification solutions portfolio to include the complementary low-pressure radio frequency technology and equipment. The combination of low pressure and atmospheric plasma technologies offer customers a wider range of surface preparation processes.

The AURORA provides the user with a versatile low pressure, cold gas plasma platform for myriad applications to include cleaning, etching, activation, polymerization, grafting and crosslinking, replacing conventional wet chemistry treatment and laborious mechanical surface preparation methods. Low pressure plasma allows tremendous flexibility for re-engineering surfaces at a molecular level in minutes. The primary advantages for the user is process and chemistry flexibility, ability to treat complex geometries, controlled environment for excellent reliability, reproducibility and cleanliness and permanency of results. The low temperature conditions ensure no bulk modifications.

The system's chamber configuration includes a flexible shelf or rack system, tumbler for small parts and powders, or cartridge for treatment of rolled goods. Standard features include four gas inputs, 1000 watt pulse generator, and industrial pumping package for high throughput, controlled by an industrial touchscreen with user friendly interface capabilities. The platform enables the user to run thousands of different chemistry combinations, with the simple change of a recipe in a matter of minutes. The availability of two optional liquid vaporization systems greatly expands the user's chemistry selection.

The equipment's robust design is well suited for research and development, production and offers a cost-effective method for prototype runs.

 

For more information on the new AURORA and other high tech low-pressure plasma systems please visit: www.plasmatechsystems.com or contact Mrs. Mikki Larner at mikki.larner@plasmatreat.com

For more information on Braake-Design please visit www.braake.com

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