Press release March 2013

   
  Addition to the 'Nanofics 120' coatings widely used to make consumer electronics, technical textiles and filtration materials water and oil repellent.
   
   

Belgium based Europlasma, a world leader in low pressure plasma technology, is happy to announce the launch a new family of nanocoatings under the “Nanofics 110” brand name.

“Nanofics” refers to nanoscaled functionalization into the core of complex shaped materials and products. It is Europlasma’s patented and patent pending nanocoating technology platform, first  applied on industrial scale in 1998.

The “Nanofics 110” coatings are highly water repellent (water contact angle of 110 degrees according to ASTM D5964) and highly oil repellent (oil repellence level 6 according to ISO 14419) fluoropolymer type of nanocoatings deposited by low pressure plasma technology.

The unique aspect of these coatings is that they are completely free from PFOA and PFOS. The coatings are also durable.  The “Nanofics 110” coating technology is protected by patents and patent applications owned  by Europlasma.

Traditional nanocoatings with high levels of water and oil repellence are derived from long molecular chains which contain traces of PFOA and PFOS. There is a general trend to move away from these chemistries for health reasons.

Europlasma’s Product Manager Peter Martens comments: “ In wet chemical DWR (durable water repellent) coating of technical textiles the switch from longer to shorter molecules is already well advanced. It is only a matter of time until the same switch will take place in the nanocoating market. Europlasma is now the first to offer  PFOA- and PFOS-free nanocoatings for technical textiles. We also expect  substantial demand for these coatings for lifestyle electronics and medical devices, such as hearing aids, where there is intense contact between the coating and the human skin.”

The “Nanofics 110” coatings are an addition to the existing “Nanofics 120” family of nanocoatings and other custom designed coating systems. The “Nanofics 120” coatings show best-in-class levels of water repellence (water contact angle of 120 degrees according to ASTM D5964) and oil repellence (oil repellence level 8 according to ISO 14419). These coatings are widely used by Europlasma’s customers to corrosion protect and/or waterproof electronic devices. There is also growing demand to apply these durable nanocoatings on technical textiles and filtration materials.

Europlasma’s latest generation of low pressure plasma machines can work with both the “Nanofics 110” and “Nanofics 120” nanocoating systems. This gives to the Europlasma customers the flexibility to switch from one to another chemistry when they think their products or their markets require different coating specifications.

Europlasma’s Managing Director Filip Legein adds: “ Europlasma was the first company to put an industrial nanocoater in the field in 1998. This low pressure plasma machine was already capable of depositing different types of fluoropolymer nanocoatings to repel water and oil. In 2003 Europlasma was the first company to deposit these nanocoatings on complex three dimensional structures instead of flat substrates, an invention that was patented by Europlasma. Since 2003 Europlasma has brought many other patented and patent pending innovations to this market. Now Europlasma is the first company to realize the transition from longer to shorter chained chemistries in the nanocoating market.  I am proud that our team of engineers and scientists confirm Europlasma’s role as a true pioneer and innovator in this emerging industry.”

Europlasma  was surprised to learn about the lawsuit announced by P2i during MWC 2013. Europlasma - until today - has not received any formal notice of this lawsuit, and is disappointed that  P2i  made the announcement during MWC 2013, and included copies of the announcement in the marketing materials distributed to its target customers during the show. We reserve all rights in this respect.

The lawsuit comes as a complete surprise to Europlasma because there have not been any discussions between P2i and Europlasma prior to the announcement. And this while P2i and Europlasma are working together intensively on projects in the USA and Japan, where P2i - until today - is calling on Europlasma’s technical expertise to realize more complex nanocoating projects.

Europlasma is also surprised to read that the lawsuit will be launched in Santa Ana, California, since Europlasma has no active customers in that geographical area. Europlasma’s only customer in that area used to be Liquipel, but after Europlasma terminated cooperation with Liquipel in 2012, Liquipel has moved to another technology called Liquipel 2.0, which is not related to Europlasma’s Nanofics technology platform.

We regret the actions taken by P2i and are awaiting receipt of  the formal notice of the lawsuit enabling us to refute their claims  immediately.

Europlasma was founded in 1993, and has dedicated all 20 years of its history to the development of low pressure plasma technology. Since 1998 Europlasma is building and selling nanocoating technology, and has been building its own patent portfolio on machines, processes and applications. Europlasma does not need intellectual property from any third party to realize best-in-class nanocoating technology. Europlasma offers innovative nanocoating technology at a pricing model that becomes attractive to mainstream products. Europlasma is unique in building large scaled production equipment that will allow the nanocoating technology to spread on industrial scale.

Europlasma has recently expanded its R&D-team. The team will put additional efforts in the further expansion of the Europlasma patent portfolio, and will start monitoring possible infringements of Europlasma patents in an organised fashion.

For technical and/or commercial inquiries about “Nanofics 110”, “Nanofics 120” or other custom designed coating systems please contact Peter Martens at peter.martens@europlasma.be or Kristof Hoornaert at kristof.hoornaert@europlasma.be.

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