Pollution-Free Process for Surface Protection

EPA Contract Number: 68D98148
Title: Pollution-Free Process for Surface Protection
Investigators: Tramel, Terri L.
Small Business: Surface Treatment Technologies Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 1998 through March 1, 1999
Project Amount: $69,667
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (1998) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: SBIR - Pollution Prevention , Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)


A newly invented technology (patent pending) provides convincing evidence of its potential to successfully respond to two areas of interest new and simple no-emission chrome plating and long-life coatings that have reduced environmental impact in both manufacture and use. Over one year of laboratory development and testing demonstrate that the response to both inquires will be positive. The purpose of this SBIR project is to investigate and prove the extent of applicability of the technology. The process is called Laser Induced Surface Improvement (LISI) and is performed by alloying precursor materials into an underlying substrate using the laser as a heat source. Permanent chromium-rich surfaces with a controlled thickness can be generated in an entirely environmentally friendly process, i.e., no harmful effluents or residuals. Several other precursor materials have been successfully used in the surface alloys on a variety of substrate materials. Unlike some competing techniques, LISI produces a nonporous, crack-free surface without need of a special environment for application. Preprocess cleaning of the substrate material is minimal, further reducing both costs and environmental concerns. The resulting molecular bond assures no delamination, chipping, or pealing of the protective surface. Testing has demonstrated surface protection from corrosion, erosion, impact, and thermal cycling.

Supplemental Keywords:

small business, SBIR, pollution prevention, engineering, chemistry, EPA., RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, Toxics, Waste, Sustainable Industry/Business, hexavalent chromium, hexavalent chromium waste, Chemical Engineering, cleaner production/pollution prevention, Environmental Chemistry, Analytical Chemistry, Chemistry and Materials Science, Engineering, 33/50, Engineering, Chemistry, & Physics, Environmental Engineering, laser induced surface improvement, chromium & chromium compounds, cleaner production, waste minimization, waste reduction, environmentally conscious manufacturing, emission control technologies, green design, environmentally benign coating, hard chromium plating , dry plating, Chromium, clean technology, chromate substitution, alternative materials, emission controls, metal finishing, metal plating industry, coating processes, production processes, chrome plating, emission reductions, innovative technology, chromium plating, alternative metal finishing, industrial innovations, pollution prevention, metal plating, air emissions, emissions contol engineering, coatings, alternative metal coating, green technology

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report
  • SBIR Phase II:

    Pollution-Free Process for Surface Protection  | 1998 Progress Report  | Final Report