Plasma Coating

plasma-coating

Plasma coating or plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) is an application using plasma in order to modify the properties of materials to produce a coating on a surface. Ultra-thin layers of different molecular groups or monomers are applied on objects and surfaces. With the help of this plasma coating process, surfaces can be made hydrophobic or hydrophilic, scratch resistant, corrosion protected or functionalized to enable bonding.

Plasma Coating Functional Principles

For coating with low-pressure plasma, a gas or liquid monomer vapor is introduced into the plasma chamber. This process gas or vapor is molecularly bonded with the aid of the plasma. This coating is deposited in the range of 10s of angstroms to microns depending on the process parameters.

For coating with an atmospheric plasma process, the gaseous monomers are introduced directly into the plasma jet by means of a carrier gas. Thus, the plasma focusses the monomer on the surface and polymerises it.

coating_principle

Hydrophobic Monomer - Hexamethyldisiloxane (HMDSO)

The process of producing a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition coating using HMDSO as a feedstock can produce a hydrophobic coating. This process of producing a hydrophobic coating or a polymer like coating using HMDSO is possible by limiting or eliminating the amount of oxygen used in the process gasses at the time of deposition. The absence of oxygen in the process produces a coating with a polymer like performance. By adding oxygen to the process in higher concentrations produces a hydrophilic coating higher in oxide concentration. As the process gas concentration increases in oxygen concentration, the deposition produced becomes less organic and higher in silicon oxide concentration.

PTFE-like Monomer: fluorinated process gases – also refer to epilamisation

The process of producing a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition coating using fluorine monomer gases as a feedstock can produce a PTFE like hydrophobic coating. There are many fluorine-containing monomer gases optimized for optimized as plasma feedstocks. These optimizations in coating performance can vary widely base on the application or industry requirements. Examples of some of the optimizations would include contact angle, mechanical wear performance, electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity, biocompatibility, water-resistance, or chemical resistance.

Hydrophilic Monomer - Vinyl Acetate, Hexamethyldisiloxane mixed with oxygen in a given ratio (significantly more HMDSO than O2)

The process of producing a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition coating using the unstable monomer vinyl acetate gas as a feedstock can produce a polyvinyl acetate (PVA) like hydrophilic coating. PVA is used in adhesives, adhesive tape, sausage casings, cheese rinds, and carpet coatings because it is harmless. The process of producing a hydrophobic coating or a polymer like coating using HMDSO is possible by limiting or eliminating the amount of oxygen used in the process gasses at the time of deposition. The absence of oxygen in the process produces a coating with polymer-like hydrophobic performance. As the process gas concentration decreases in oxygen concentration, the deposition produced becomes more organic and polymer-like.

Low friction plasma coating. The process of low friction plasma coating applies a coating of carbon to the surface of the part to be treated.

The process of producing a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition coating to decrease the coefficient of friction on a surface is possible with plasma processing. This reduction of surface friction can be made with PTFE like, MHDSO and carbon plasma deposited treatments. The process of using carbon as a low friction coating is the lowest cost of these coatings. This simple, low-cost process is often used in coating elastomeric seals and O-rings to produce a condition where these components are easier to handle, and vibratory bowl feed in high volume manufacturing. This method of using dry lubrication on seals of this type also reduces the possibility of contamination sticking to the surface of a part lubricated with liquid lubricant.

eBook

Plasma Etching and Cleaning Strategy for Better Product Quality

Plasma Coating Industries & Uses

Industrial manufacturing is a leader in the application of plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). Using PECVD to produce a coating to permanently change surface energy in materials, apply low friction coatings, or coat a material to enhance the performance or properties of materials.

Medical device manufacturing has used PECVD as a way to produce changes in material performance. Optimization of friction and chemical resistance is a common requirement in medical product design. Often medical products require a fluid to wet to a surface or functionalize a surface with specific molecular structure. Plasma coating is a great option for this type of application.

Popular Plasma Coating Systems

{id=3, name='Nano', order=2}

Nano Version 4

Control Cabinet:
W 560 mm H 600 mm D 600 mm

Chamber:
Ø 10.5 in, L 16.5 in

Chamber Volume:
24

Gas Supply:
Mass flow controllers

Generator:
1 pc. with 40 kHz
(optional: 13.56 MHz or 2.45 GHz)

Control:
Touch Screen

{id=3, name='Nano', order=2}

Nano Version 6

Control Cabinet:
W 600 mm H 1700 mm D 800 mm

Chamber:
Ø 10.5 in, L 16.5 in

Chamber Volume:
24

Gas Supply:
Mass flow controllers

Generator:
1 pc. with 40 kHz
(optional: 13.56 MHz or 2.45 GHz)

Control:
PC

{id=5, name='Special Tetra', order=4}

Special Tetra 120-LF-PC

Control Cabinet:
W 600 mm H 1700 mm D 800 mm

Chamber Volume:
120

Gas Supply:
Mass flow controllers

Generator:
1 pc. with 40 kHz
(optional: 13.56 MHz or 2.45 GHz)

Control:
PC

{id=5, name='Special Tetra', order=4}

Special Tetra 130-LF-PC

Control Cabinet:
W 600 mm H 1700 mm D 800 mm

Gas Supply:
Mass flow controllers

Generator:
1 pc. with 40 kHz
(optional: 13.56 MHz or 2.45 GHz)

Control:
PC

{id=5, name='Special Tetra', order=4}

Special Tetra 375-LF-PC

Control Cabinet:
W 870 mm H 1860 mm D 1400 mm

Chamber Volume:
375

Gas Supply:
Mass flow controllers

Generator:
1 pc. with 40 kHz
(optional: 13.56 MHz or 2.45 GHz)

Control:
PC

{id=5, name='Special Tetra', order=4}

Special Tetra 7500-LF-PC

Control Cabinet:
W 600 mm H 2100 mm D 800 mm

Chamber Volume:
7500

Gas Supply:
Mass flow controllers

Generator:
1 pc. with 40 kHz
(optional: 13.56 MHz or 2.45 GHz)

Control:
PC

Workshop

Learn about a Plasma Processing Workshop