Project: Development and industrial implementation of novel, wear-resistant and low-stick boron-based coatings

Tooling, forming and forging in aluminum is extremely important, especially in the automotive sector in order to decrease the weight to be transported, reduce fuel consumption, fulfil further legislation demands, reduce greenhouse gases etc. Especially recycled alumina is and will be a key material. However, a major complexity in connection with tooling of alumina is the adhesion of alumina to the applied forms and the forging tools. This is normally solved by applying lubricants or other release agents. This is complicated and in several cases also directly unhealthy. The coatings to be developed in the present project will be tested and validated at EMO’s production site and at the Emil Bröll, which is a SME, desperately looking for new and innovative coatings to solve different application-orientated issues such as: Moulds, Friction Disks, and Yarn guides._x000D__x000D_The present project will merge coating development, thermodynamic model calculations and tooling test and verification of the performance of the developed coatings with the primary focus of enabling superior tooling, forming and forging in aluminium. This will be done by adding boron (B) to (TiAlCrNC)-based coatings by combining galvanic electroplating (Cr, Fe and Ni) with industrial scale PVD, CVD and a high current ion implanter shooting boron into surface coating. The CVD and PVD techniques will be used to develop and deposit superhard TiNBCCr/FeB/Fe2B type coatings with a multilayer nature to engineer the built-in stress level, which is known to be a limiting factor with current BTiN coatings. The accelerator will be used to add additional boron or nitrogen into the top coatings to further facilitate super non-stick properties. The family of TiBN coatings has revealed excellent properties for cutting, forming and stamping in aluminium [Surface and Coatings Technology 163-164(2003)149-156 and 139(2001)25-34]. The Tribology Centre at Danish Technological Institute will provide both PACVD/PVD and an industrial-scale ion implanter to further facilitate the development of new B-containing coatings. PACVD deposition of TiB [Surface and Coating Technology 131(2000)141-1466 and 139(2001)25-349] has demonstrated the formation of crystallographic TiB2 and that these coatings have promising properties for applications in connection with contact to aluminium. Similar findings have been reported, based on PVD for the cutting in of aluminium._x000D_However, a major limitation of these coatings is their ability to handle the in-layer stress level. It is expected that the coating expertise at the R&D team at the Tribology Centre will be able to control this by incorporating either stress releasing nano-crystals nanolayers. _x000D_Secondly, the project will involve two applications of boronizing based on two different plasma techniques. The first is a plasma electrolysis technique [Materials and Design 30(2009)1726-1728] where an aqueous solution of borax is utilized as an electrolyte for producing a gaseous medium that, through the applied voltage, is converted into a highly localized plasma facilitating that boron diffuses into the substrate forming hard boride (FeB, Fe2B) phases with a rate significantly higher than conventional boronizing. This very recently published paper (2009) will lay the fundament for reproducing and proving a possible industrialization of the process. Clearly, there is large synergy to the equipment used in conventional galvano plating at Elplatek and thermodynamic calculations. The second technique is a more traditional plasma boronizing based on BCl3-H2-Ar mixtures. A recent article has shown that it is possible to get diffusion depths already at 650 C [surface & Coatings Technology 197(2005)51]._x000D_The consortium involves the necessary competences to bring these new types of coatings into production and validate their performance at an industrial end-users._x000D__x000D_ELPLATEK A/S: Strong and leading position in traditional galvano-based coatings. Wet chemistry and tanks for more explorative coating development will be made available. _x000D_Danish Technological Institute: Strong and leading competences in coating development and characterization. The coating development will be performed on industrial-scale CemeCon units, a Rübig PACVD unit, and a Danfysik ion implanter. _x000D_Electroplating Consultation: This small company has been involved in order to be able to calculate the underlying thermodynamic behind the different coatings._x000D_EMO: Leading Slovenian SME tool and die producers, specialized in project development, design, production, service, test and marketing of high quality tools and dies for metal processing. EMO will evaluating the improved performance of the developed coatings for sheet and metal reshaping. _x000D_Emil Bröll: Manufactures system components and spare parts made of high performance and ultrapure ceramics, which are highly tribologically stressed. The company produces 60 % of the world requirement of ceramic navels for OE-rotor spinning.

Acronym B-Super (Reference Number: 5139)
Duration 01/01/2010 - 31/12/2012
Project Topic There is a huge market potential for tooling/forming in (recycled)alumina. The present project will develop nanodesigned multilayer boron-based coatings by combining thermodynamics with coating synthesis (PVD/CVD). The coatings will be tested and implemented in the tool, mould and yarn production.
Project Results
(after finalisation)
Highly wear resistant surface out of aluminium and stainless steel substrates
Network Eurostars
Call Eurostars Cut-Off 3

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
5 Emil Bröll GmbH & Co. Partner Austria
5 Electroplating Consultation v. Per Møller Partner Denmark
5 ELPLATEK A/S, Electroplating technic Coordinator Denmark
5 EMO - Orodjarna d.o.o. Partner Slovenia
5 Danish Technological Institute Partner Denmark