Materials And Processes For Innovative Manufacturing

PINK Plasma Systems - Surface Cleaning, Activation, and Modification

Plasma, a high energy collection of ions, is known as the fourth state of matter after solids, liquids, and gases. When generated in a PINK system it can be used to treat surfaces in a variety of ways. Composition of the plasma will depend on the feed gas, which is selected for the particular application.

PINK GmbH Thermosysteme makes low pressure, low temperature plasma systems that are very effective treating the surfaces of all materials (plastics, ceramics, glasses, metals) without overheating the core product.

Standard products range from a tabletop unit (V6-G) with a working chamber of 6.7" x 6.7" x 7.9" to a cabinet unit (V80-G) with a working volume of 15.7" x 16.9" x 18.1" to custom inline systems, even reel-to-reel for tape treatment.
PiNK Plasma System V55-G

Ultrapure Surface Cleaning

Cleaning with an oxygen plasma removes organic residues such as residual detergents, oils, etc. Ultraclean surfaces are then more suitable for bonding, printing, painting and so forth.

The low temperature capability of PINK Plasma is particularly suitable for cleaning plastics or combination materials such as electronic devices. The parts never get more than a few degrees above room temperature. Even though a batch process, cycle time is typically only 10 minutes or so.

Surface Activation

Plastics such as polyethylene, polypropylene, and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) are nonpolar and therefore don't coat well with inks or paints or bond with adhesives. Treating these materials in a PINK plasma system will create polar functional groups on the surface that enable coating or bonding. Bulk properties of the plastic below the surface remain unchanged.
Water droplet on nonpolar plastic
Water droplet on nonpolar plastic before plasma treatment.
Water Droplet On Plasma Treated Plastic
Water droplet on plasma treated plastic showing high wettability.

Surface Modification

Surface modification includes both etching and coating. Etching is a more aggressive form of surface activation in which gases such as carbon tetrafluoride are used along with oxygen. Typical materials treated this way are plastics, silicon, and silicon dioxide.

Specialized coatings can be put on almost any material with the right combination of feed gas and plasma conditions. Coatings can be either organic or inorganic and are usually highly cross-linked, making them very stable. Some coatings that can be achieved are:
  • Hydrophobic
  • Hydrophilic
  • Diffusion-proof
  • Biocompatible
  • Primer

Assembly Answers, LLC is an authorized representative for PINK GmbH Thermosysteme. To begin the discussion of your particular application please fill in the following form.

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