Nanostructured anodised aluminium
The Nanocoat project seeks to produce highly ordered structures of anodised aluminium oxide (AAO), currently not achievable using state-of-the-art techniques. In doing so, the project will present new markets for anodised aluminium materials while strengthening existing ones.
Corrosion and wear resistance, hardness, ageing, and adherence are all highly dependent on the surface micro- and nano-structure. The lack of control of these structures limits the performance of anodised parts, and can shorten their lifetime, leading to unforeseen machine failure and down-time, and unnecessary replacement. Decorative surfaces can quickly lose their colour, and coatings can peel.
The introduction of controlled nanostructures promotes the growth of uniform coatings and increases the performance and lifetime of anodised aluminium. The Nanocoat technique will improve the technological capability of the industry and provide opportunities for new markets where anodised aluminium has previously not been considered.