Low Friction Coating – Graphit-iC Coating
Graphit-iC ™ is a carbon based PVD thin film coating capable of sustaining contact pressures >3 GPa. Graphit-iC ™ is a dark electrically conductive coating with a graphitic microcrystalline structure which exhibits medium hardness, low friction coefficient (0.1 – 0.05 depending on conditions), high wear resistance (~10-17 m3 N-1 m-1)and excellent corrosion resistance.
Graphit-iC™ coating – Able to operate under water unlike DLCs
The vast majority of commercially available DLC coatings are hydrogenated and therefore tend to perform poorly in water (hydrogen bonding occurs between the oxygen in the water and the hydrogen in the DLC), Graphit-iC ™ on the other hand retains its properties in high humidity and even under water.
Graphit-iC™ coating – Examples of industrial applications
Graphit-iC ™ is used extensively within the automotive industry in fuel injection systems and heavily loaded sliding components such as gudgeon pins, cam followers, gears and bearings.
Graphit-iC™ coatings are being developed and tested for use in artificial hip joints. They have shown to present no bio-compatibility problems. The uncoated hip joints are claimed to have a useful life of around 12–15 years, whereas the wear rates obtained for the Graphit-iC™ coating suggest that this could be extended to over 50 years. Other medical applications include medical tools such as bone cutting saws and broaches, and dental instruments.