Thermal sprayed coating techniques involve melting or heating materials and spraying them onto a surface. The coating precursor, or feedstock, is heated or melted by electrical (plasma or arc) or chemical (combustion flame) sources, accelerated to the substrate direction, and finally flattened onto the substrate forming a coating with a fine microstructure. These coatings are effective in increasing component life and value and decreasing machinery downtime.
MesoCoat Inc. and Powdermet Inc., both of Euclid, Ohio, have improved on this technology by engineering their PComP™ Nanocomposite Cermet Coatings down to the nanoscale to form a hierarchical structure. Formed from particulate composite powders (PComP) containing both ceramics and metals (cermet), the coatings are up to 70% lighter than commercially available tungsten carbide coatings, and up to 40% lighter than electrolytic hard chrome coatings (EHC), due to the use of light and low-cost hard particle-based reinforcements. Like other cermet coatings, PComP can be applied quickly, and can be machined to tight tolerances. Applied thermally, PComP™ is available in a number of formulations, ranging from high-toughness tungsten-carbide-cobalt to low-density corrosion-resistant silicon-nitride-based coatings.