Surface Technology

Fraunhofer IFAM has long-standing and in-depth expertise in surface technology, acquired in projects with partners from a wide range of industries and involving many innovative technologies.

Customized and effective surface treatment

The know-how of Fraunhofer IFAM covers all aspects of industrial surface technology, from research in materials science to the development of new coating materials and treatment processes. Project partners benefit from our expertise in surface characterization and evaluation, the functionalization and modification of surfaces, the application of coatings, and quality assurance measures.

The development of dry and wet chemical cleaning and surface treatment techniques, coating materials and coating methods, printing processes, thin and thick film technologies, and quality assurance in industrial production are key areas of our work. The characterization and evaluation of surfaces using chemical, electrochemical, and structural analyses provide valuable information about the structure and properties of surfaces and this is augmented by a variety of computer-aided simulation methods and comprehensive test facilities.

Surfaces - From function to production

The experts at Fraunhofer IFAM have in-depth knowledge of customized surface modification and functionalization. This includes the cleaning and activation of surfaces and suitable pretreatment prior to coating and bonding. The functional requirements of surfaces are very varied and depend on the respective application. For example, surfaces can be provided with anti-corrosion, low-drag, anti-icing, dirt-repelling, antibacterial, biocompatible, and anti-fouling properties. Specific tribological, optical, electrical, and sensor functions can also be introduced. In addition, a very wide spectrum of application methods can be employed, ranging the laboratory scale to pilot plants and including scale up to production quantities and robot-aided automation of industrial production.

Quality assured surfaces

Quality assurance is an important aspect of surface technology. In-line quality assurance concepts and test methods, which allow constant process monitoring, are developed at Fraunhofer IFAM. New requirements on quality assurance and in particular the digitization of industrial production are taken into account. The institute also possesses accredited test facilities, including for failure/damage analysis. Special workforce training courses and regular technology transfer to industrial practice are also key aspects of the work of Fraunhofer IFAM.

 

Research objectives in the area of surface technology

 

  • Cleaning and activation
  • Pretreatment prior to coating and bonding
  • Corrosion protection
  • Functionalization of surfaces

Surface technology - Videos

Test stands on Helgoland - Material and corrosion research

Learn more about the surface technology expertise at Fraunhofer IFAM in our different departments

 

Adhesion and Interface Research

The experts of Adhesion and interface research focus on production-ready and functional optimization of various components surfaces.

 

Plasma Technology and Surfaces

The department is doing research on economical surface modifications of plastics, metals and ceramical materials.

 

Paint/Lacquer Technology

The researcher at the department Paint/Lacquer Technology work on industry projects or within the scope of publically funded projects.

 

Functional Printing

The department  has long-term experience with focuses on (nano-) composite, nano structured functional materials, printed electronic engineering and sensors.  

 

Automation and Production Technology

The focuses on the development and automation assembly processes for large fiber reinforced plastic (FRP) structures to meet the specific needs of individual customers.

 

Chemistry of Fiber Composite Materials

The department is doing research on new polymer systems, which can be plastically shaped despite 3D network structure.