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New surface functions

New technologies to limit wear and friction

IREIS is at the forefront of innovation and is developing new technologies to limit wear and friction. IREIS is striving notably through this work to go beyond existing technologies in order to create new surface functions.

This functionalisation of surfaces is one of the major challenges, for example, in combating CO2 emissions, but also has applications beyond solely environmental considerations.

Microtexturing is one of the latest examples to date of possible surface engineering improvements.

 

MICROTEXTURING

This is a technological breakthrough which uses lubricant piezo-viscous properties. Thousands of holes per cm2 make it possible to start as early as possible the hydrodynamic regime. 
 
Using a microtextured DLC coating, you can reduce the friction of a valve tappet by 60% and reduce an engine's CO2 emissions by 2 g/km.
 
 


 
 
 

Besides microtexturing, some of these technologies are already at a more advance stage of development and are widely used in series production in various industries.
 
Here are 4 examples from more than 200 studies which have been carried out by IREIS:
 
 

 

DLC to reduce friction in engines

 
The DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) coatings developed by HEF R&D for valve rocker applications lead to a 30% reduction in coefficient of friction. These few microns of carbon reduce CO2 emissions for a conventional vehicle by 1 g/km.
 
 

Plastic interior rear-view mirrors

 
In cooperation with the equipment manufacturer, we developed the technology of interior rear-view mirrors completely made of plastic. The aim was to replace the glass with an injection-moulded plastic part with a reflective surface and a thermal surface offering improvements in terms of weight, size and design freedom.
 
   
 

Microbatteries

IREIS has more than 15 years' experience in the area of the thin layers used in electrochemical applications. In particular, IREIS has developed microbatteries of a total thickness of about 20 µm.

 

 

Space probe coatings
The ExoMars mission is due to send a probe to explore the surface of Mars. HEF R&D has developed the coating of the seismic antenna. This antenna is coated with a metal alloy, the thickness of which increases linearly along its 30 metres in order to obtain the desired electrical resistance.