Surfaces tailor-made with environmentally friendly plasma
The Surface Technology Department of Freudenberg Forschungsdienste KG develops solutions to technical problems by specifically modifying the surface of components and rolled goods (textiles, nonwovens, foils) without negatively affecting the characteristic material properties of the substrate. In this way standard commodities become customized specialities.
Freudenberg Forschungsdienste is running comprehensive tests in order to compare classic ultrasonic cleaning, blasting, and wet-chemical processes against the atmospheric pressure plasma technology.
In addition to its many years of experience, the institute can draw on chemical and microscopic analysis methods, measurement and customization of wettability, surface energy and surface topology, as well as possibilities of mechanical testing of components (for example peel test, tensile- shear test, tensile test in its bonding laboratory). It is always on the lookout for suitable adhesive or bonding agent systems in reference to the specific application involved – for example on the basis of polyurethanes.
The company's own magazine "FFD Dialogue " (1/2010) gives a summary: "We rate plasma technology as the technology of the future for surface modifications due to its environmentally friendly and resource-efficient nature. Neither solvents are emitted nor waste water is contaminated, and drying processes with high energy and time consumption are not required. Furthermore, the aspect of being able to launch new innovative products or product properties on the market is of particular interest. In addition to the above-mentioned application of pretreatment using plasma jets (for example for bonding, laminating, printing or dyeing), we use plasma technology to obtain a wide range of very different surface properties: tuning of surface energy and wettability, hydrophilization [...], hydrophobization, oleophobization (dirt- and oil-repellent effect), multifunctional coatings (e.g. acidic, alkaline, adhesive or separating) or also bioactive coatings (antibacterial, fungicidal).
Freudenberg Forschungsdienste KG increasingly uses the plasma technology for continuous plasma activation and plasma coating of rolled goods. "This technology enables the rapid and cost-effective surface modification of endless large-area substrates, such as textiles, nonwovens or foils."