CemeCon Inc. held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Jan. 17 to officially open its new 15,000-sq.-ft. headquarters and CVD-diamond coating facility in Big Flats, N.Y. The opening marks the fourth expansion of production capabilities since the U.S. subsidiary was opened in 1998 and the third increase in capacity for CVD-diamond processing since 2014.
Those attending the ceremony included Dr. Toni Leyendecker, founder and owner of Germany-based parent company CemeCon AG; Tom Santulli, Chemung County executive; Kamala Keeley, Chemung County Chamber of Commerce president; and Mike Krusen, president of Southern Tier Economic Growth.
“It was quite a big deal for the local community,” said Gary Lake, president of CemeCon Inc. “We ended up on the local paper’s front page, above the fold.”
CemeCon relocated its CVD coating equipment to its new building. Image courtesy of CemeCon.
The new building joins the company’s 25,000-sq.-ft. facility in the same Big Flats complex. With CVD-diamond production relocated to the new building, the larger building will continue to house CemeCon’s equipment for PVD and high-power impulse magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS) PVD coating technologies.
“We can add 75 percent to our PVD and HiPIMS business because of the area that was vacated by the diamond process,” Lake said, adding that the company is in the process of ordering another HiPIMS machine. “We have enough space that we could easily go up another five or six machines. That’s a big deal.”
He emphasized that the fully commercialized HiPIMS technology is able to deposit coatings that are thicker, harder and experience less stress during application than conventional PVD coatings. Therefore, a wider range of coating thicknesses can be deposited that better adhere to the substrate.
Although harder, the coating exhibits a high level of toughness. “You would normally think it would be more brittle, but it’s not,” Lake said.
The new technology is opening doors throughout the coating industry, according to Lake. “The introduction of HiPIMS technology has changed everything. The properties we’re getting from HiPIMS technology, compared to sputtering and DC arc-based technologies, are phenomenally better.”
Because of HiPIMS’ high energy, a PVD coating can adhere to a CVD diamond coating, enabling a conductive coating to be deposited on diamond, Lake explained. He added that a PVD coating deposited via a typical arc-sputtering process will not properly adhere to diamond. With the new capability, CemeCon has introduced CCDiaHiSpeed, a coating material with properties that were previously unattainable.
“That is of interest in some very specific areas relative to automated machining,” he said. “CCDiaHi-Speed is a developmental product and is really a technology looking for a home.”
With its new headquarters and production facility in operation, Lake predicts continuing growth for CemeCon Inc., which employs 50 people. “We have added people every year for the last 18 years,” he said. “Realistically, I see adding another 25 percent in the next 3 to 5 years. We basically have been growing at that level.”
Related Glossary Terms
- chemical vapor deposition ( CVD)
chemical vapor deposition ( CVD)
High-temperature (1,000° C or higher), atmosphere-controlled process in which a chemical reaction is induced for the purpose of depositing a coating 2µm to 12µm thick on a tool’s surface. See coated tools; PVD, physical vapor deposition.
- physical vapor deposition ( PVD)
physical vapor deposition ( PVD)
Tool-coating process performed at low temperature (500° C), compared to chemical vapor deposition (1,000° C). Employs electric field to generate necessary heat for depositing coating on a tool’s surface. See CVD, chemical vapor deposition.