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Oerlikon Balzers Coating AG
Balzers Technology & Service Centre
Iramali 18
9496 Balzers

P3e Pulse Enhanced Electron Emission

P3e This revolutionary process permits virtually any combination of conventional hard coatings with aluminium-oxide-based coatings. The coating properties can be varied over an unprecedentedly wide range. As a result, a totally new realm of options for the design of high-performance tools becomes accessible. P3e™ is a proprietary Oerlikon Balzers technology.

What is P3e™?

With the P3e™ coating technology, Balzers became the world’s first company to deposit hard corundum typed aluminium-oxide based coatings in a PVD process at temperatures significantly below 600 °C. Such coatings formerly could be produced only by CVD at much higher temperatures. For certain qualities of cemented carbides, however, the CVD process poses the danger of embrittlement, and it was nearly impossible to coat steels at all. PVD oxide coatings were developed primarily for tools, but they are also suitable for mechanical elements where insulating properties are desired along with resistance to high temperatures and corrosion. P3e™ is a proprietary Oerlikon Balzers technology.

How does P3e™ work?

The P3e™ technology is based on arc evaporation using pulse technology. The process can be run in pure oxygen atmosphere. Electron emission and plasma density are controlled by the pulse current. The support layer and the aluminium-oxide-based layer are applied in a single pass at temperatures well below 600°C. With P3e™ technology it is possible to deposit any metal oxide (Al2O3, ZrO2, Cr2O3, Ta2O5, etc.) and combinations. P3e™ is available as an option with INNOVA and INGENIA coating systems or can be retrofitted to your system on-site.

P3e™ Diagram

P3e Process Diagram

1 Electron Beam Source
2 Oxygen Environment for Cathodic Arc Sources
3 Reactive gas O2
4 Arc Sources (coating material and backing plate)
5 Components/Tools
6 Low Voltage Arc Discharge
7 Auxiliary Anode
8 Pulsed Cathodic Arc Evaporation
9 Pulsed High Power Substrate Voltage
10 Vacuum Pump