The Fraunhofer Group for Light & Surfaces has given electron-beam technology a special role in its research on manufacturing processes. Electron-beam coating is particularly suitable for high coating rates and is the ideal tool for large-area film coating processes. The Fraunhofer Group for Light & Surfaces is dedicated to the development of technologies and processes for surface refinement and for organic electronics. The core technologies (sputtering, plasma-activated high-rate deposition, high-rate PECVD, electron beam technology, organic electronics, and IC and system design) are used to solve a variety of industrial surface engineering problems.
In the context of surface technologies, the group has numerous industrial plants at its disposal for electron beam based coating processes for large areas in batch systems, in-line or in roll-to-roll processes, as well as electron-beam systems for the efficient processing of surfaces. For specific applications in organic electronics, Fraunhofer FEP has, in particular, several clean rooms with research and development lines. Thanks to these facilities, the institute can refine or coat substrates made of glass, plastic or metal, flexible surfaces such as metallic strips, flexible glass or plastic films, three-dimensional components or even silicon wafers.
Furthermore, since it is such a flexible tool, the electron beam can be used for variety of modifications and variations, especially in the treatment of plastics. At Fraunhofer FEP, surfaces can be sterilized, cross-linked or otherwise modified (functionalized) by low-energy electron beams, which is possible by changing the process parameters. Thus, a change in the acceleration energy leads to different penetration depths of the electron beams into the material, a differentiation of the irradiated energy dose in time and quantity leads to different processes in the substrate.