Back to Archive “2010”

Plochingen, July 16, 2010

Honors for a new dream team

Dr. Gert Richter (re) und Stephan Diehl
Dr. Gert Richter (right) and Stephan Diehl can be proud of their contribution to winning the Stifterverband award.
Photo Copyright: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

Research – an important foundation for future innovations – often takes place behind the scenes. In order to offer experts and the main parties involved a platform to make their findings public, the Fraunhofer Society suggested that the Stifterverband – the business community’s innovation agency for the German science system – present this year’s Science Award to a collaborative project in which CeramTec AG, Plochingen, plays a major role. DiaCer® – diamond-coated ceramic – is the name of the result of years of research which has combined two materials that at first sight do not appear to belong together.

After taking a second look, however, it becomes apparent that diamond and advanced ceramics harmonize very well together. Both materials bring their most valuable properties to this partnership: Maximum wear protection and low friction coefficients extend the service life of components, improve production processes and considerably reduce energy consumption.

The research project clearly showed the performance capabilities of this composite in demonstrations with diamond-coated mechanical seals, wire-drawing dies and inserts. CeramTec AG, the global market leader with years of experience in the field of ceramic cutting tools, is responsible for the subproject dealing with diamond-coated inserts, which open up new application fields for special wear requirements. Now, for example, the machining of aluminum materials and MMC materials with ceramic is considered for the first time, something that was not possible with the previous state of ceramics technology.

Winning the 2010 Science Award is confirmation of CeramTec’s competence in the area of advanced ceramics. In fact, it only took 1.5 years of research to exceed the bond strengths of diamond-coated hard metals and to set new standards in machining with DiaCer® products. The collaborative research project was presented the award, which carries prize money of 50,000 euros, in the presence of Prof. Dr. Annette Schavan, Federal Minister for Education and Research. Dr. Gert Richter, Project Manager for diamond-coated inserts, and Stefan Diehl, responsible for testing, accepted the award on behalf of CeramTec AG. Johannes Schneider, Head of Product Management, was responsible for coordination with the Tools division at CeramTec.