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This revolutionary process permits virtually any conventional hard coating to be combined with an aluminium-oxide-based coating, which enables coating properties to be varied over an unprecedentedly wide range. The result: a totally new realm of options for the design of high-performance tools. P3e® is a proprietary Oerlikon Balzers technology.

What is P3e®?

Using P3e® coating technology, Balzers was the first company in the world to deposit hard corundum typed aluminium-oxide based coatings in a PVD process at temperatures significantly below 600 °C. Such coatings could previously only be produced by CVD at much higher temperatures. The CVD process is however associated with a risk of embrittlement for some grades of cemented carbides, and it is virtually impossible to use it to coat steels. P3e® was primarily developed for tools, but they are also suitable for mechanical elements when both insulating properties and high temperature and corrosion resistance are required. P3e® is a proprietary Oerlikon Balzers technology.

How does P3e® work?

P3e® technology is based on arc evaporation and pulse technology and can be run in a pure oxygen atmosphere. Pulse current controls electron emission and plasma density. The support layer and the aluminium oxide-based layer are applied in a single pass at temperatures well below 600°C. P3e® technology allows the deposition of any metal oxide (Al2O3, ZrO2, Cr2O3, Ta2O5, etc.) and any combination of metal oxides. P3e® is available as an option with INNOVA and INGENIA coating systems or can be retrofitted to your system on-site.

  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

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