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Systems for assessment of surface integrity

Final surface integrity is of the highest importance in the industrial and technical design. The project will focus on a system for assesing surface quality (nano-, micro-, macro level) in product, tool and mould production.

In industrial sectors, like the automotive and household appliances industries and others, there is very tough competition. The producers in these areas must produce products incorporating high quality, durability and aesthetics. All the products must also meet demanding environmental criteria. The final product quality comprises of many different measured and non measured values. These factors can be divided into several categories, such as: - Mechanical properties; - Aesthetic properties; - Chemical properties, etc. Designers are forced to define all the product properties in advance, so that the costumers will get an appropriate product for the required needs. In many cases, the problems of surface definition are not defined properly, or not defined at all. The definition of surface quality is very strongly linked to the materials selection. With the introduction of many new, advanced and highly sophisticated materials, the designers must have a system that will enable them to select appropriate surface conditions for selected materials. These factors are also very important for tool and mould producers, which are responsible for the development and production of industrial tools and moulds. Therefore both the designers of final products, as well as the designers of tools and moulds, need to have a system that will enable them to determine adequate surface conditions for selected products (tools and moulds). In the end, manufacturing technologies are what enables meeting all designers' requirements. The aim of the project is to develop a system (Internet based) where the designers and technologists will be, dependent on the material, able to use different scientific and technical criteria for the selection of: - appropriate surface definition; - required machining technologies; - surface coatings for the tools and products; - surface coatings for cutting tools. The proposed project is a very complex project, where different scientific fields are involved, from the materials, through to the technology, mechanical engineering and aesthetic demands. Another very important issue is that the surface integrity must be assured on all different levels, from the macro level, where the generic requirements are fulfilled, down to the micro- and nano-scale, where the final, crucial product properties are defined. The project will be focused on advanced polymer materials, new high strength steels (sheet metal) and tool materials. The project will target approximately 30 major producers of final products (automotive and household sector), 35,000 injection moulding companies, 4,000 tool and mould making companies and approximately 25 material producers throughout the EU. With the successful implementation of the project, the savings in costs are 5% to 15% in the production phase and up to 10% in the designing phase. The project consortium will be comprised of respected companies in the field of final part producers, tool and mould makers and the best R&D institutions in the field. During the project duration, other participants will also be invited into the consortium. The basic decision was that the small consortium of highly professional scientific experts will define the core problems and core activities in the system SURFACE +. When the basic work is finished, other partners will also be invited into the project. The targeted countries are FRANCE, GERMANY, AUSTRIA, CROATIA, LITHUANIA and PORTUGAL.
Acronym: 
SURFACE +
Project ID: 
4 133
Start date: 
01-09-2007
Project Duration: 
36months
Project costs: 
1 300 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Surface treatment (painting, galvano, polishing, CVD, PVD)
Market Area: 
Process control equipment and systems

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