Plasma Surface Technology · Materials Physics

We develop new layer systems for decorative and functional applications and examine physical and chemical material properties

The Plasma Surface Technology and Materials Physics department is engaged in vacuum-based depositions, in surface modifications and the characterization of materials with respect to the physical and chemical properties. The thin film deposition and surface modification is carried out using PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) and PACVD (Plasma-Assisted Chemical Vapor Deposition) processes. The laboratory plants are equipped for magnetron sputtering (HIPIMS/HPPMS, MF, DC), cathodic arc evaporation, plasma beam deposition and pulsed CVD. Coatings were also prepared from a plastic varnish with different additives (e.g. nanoparticles). These methods provide a wide spectrum of possibilities for the modification of deposition parameters and allow the deposition of different materials like steel, hard metals, metals, plastics, ceramics and glass. The applications range from wear- and corrosion protection over decorative applications to magnetic storage media, sensors and catalysis.
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Research and Development

  • PVD and PACVD layer development
  • Plasma nitriding
  • Wear and corrosion protection
  • Decorative hard coatings
  • Nanocrystalline materials
  • Transparent plastic coatings


  • Roughness and profile measurements 2D INFO | 3D INFO
  • Film thickness measurements INFO
  • Tribological examinations INFO
  • Microhardness tests INFO
  • Microstructure analysis
  • Accredited according to DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025

Current Research Projects

Investigation of PVD and CVD intermediate layers as a cobalt diffusion barrier for diamond deposition onto cemented carbide
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Surface characterization with the confocal microscope Nanofocus µsurf custom (in German)
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2-dimensional X-ray diffractometry with the Bruker Vantec-500 detector (in German)
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Plasma characterization with the plasma monitor HIDEN EQP 300 (in German)
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Dr. Martin Fenker
Head of Department
P +49 7171 1006-400
Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Herbert Kappl
Deputy Head of Department
P +49 7171 1006-403

Equipment and Procedures

  • X-ray diffraction (XRD, XRR)
  • Confocal microscopy INFO
  • Scratch test, Rockwell adhesion
  • Colorimetry INFO
  • Corrosion tests
  • Electrical and magnetical measurements