A Novel Process for the Application and Finishing of Nanocrystalline Superhard Steel onto Internal Combustion Engine Components

Period of Performance: 01/01/2003 - 12/31/2003


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Faraday Technology, Inc.
315 Huls Drive Array
Englewood, OH 45315
Principal Investigator
Firm POC


72097S03-I This project will introduce nanocrystalline metals in the form of coatings to improve the wear characteristics of internal combustion engine (ICE) components, enabling higher operating temperatures and, consequently, better fuel efficiency. Using a novel electrophoretic deposition technique, a uniform nanocrystalline coating will be placed on materials that are of interest to internal combustion engine manufacturers. Then, using an electrically-mediated finishing and machining process, the coatings will be treated to provide the necessary surface finish and dimensional accuracy. Phase 1 will: (1) deposit, via electrically-mediated electrophoretic deposition, super hard steel coatings, (2) characterize the structural and mechanical properties of the coatings, (3) evaluate the surface finish and dimensional accuracy of the coating relative to thermal spray techniques, (4) polish and machine the coating by adapting electrically-mediated techniques that have been successfully implemented on other difficult-to-machine materials, and (5) evaluate the combination of the above techniques in terms of implementation cost and performance, as compared to currently practiced techniques. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by awardee: With the application of nanocrystalline coatings to ICE components, the improvement of friction and wear characteristics should be improved, increasing the fuel efficiency of the engine. Increased fuel efficiency would have major impacts, including reductions in waste energy, energy imports, air pollution, greenhouse gas emissions, and energy costs.