Topics & News Release
Toyo Advanced Technologies Puts Internally Developed New Model PVD Furnace into Full-Scale Operation.
- Provides High-Quality/High-Performance PVD Coating -
Toyo Advanced Technologies Co., Ltd. (Head office: Minami-ku, Hiroshima City, President: Yoshiaki Hongo; "Toyo" hereinafter) has internally developed a new model of physical vapor deposition (PVD) furnace and installed it for operation at the company's Head Office Plant. Use of this furnace will further increase quality and performance of Toyo's unique "low-temperature TiC", a strategic product of the company, and is expected to lead to the formation of new coating films.
The developed furnace is a large arc-ion plating PVD furnace model TF-778N. Toyo first internally developed the small PVD furnace model TF-744 with the same format in 2008 and installed it in their Head Office Plant. This was followed by the large furnace TF-778 model with the same format in 2009, which was installed in the Tokyo Plant of the company and marked the start of expanding sales of PVD coating including "low-temperature TiC".
Although the PVD coating market is expanding, the competition is increasingly intensifying due to factors such as each company introducing new and strategic products. By completely revamping the TF-778 model to newly develop a furnace capable of providing films with high quality and performance exceeding that of existing products, Toyo aims to further increase product appeal. For that reason, the newly developed TF-778N model furnace has been assigned a role as strategic equipment in the company and is scheduled to be introduced to the Tokyo Plant in FY 2014 as well.
The main merits of the new furnace are as described below.
(1)Formation of High-Quality/High-Performance Films
Using a simulation of the effects of magnetic fields on film formation as well as quality engineering, Toyo was able to newly develop control systems capable of forming dense coating films at high speed. By adopting these to a new model of furnace, film can be formed with high quality and performance exceeding that of existing products.
- High levels of hardness and toughness are achieved by optimizing the crystalline structure of film.
- Excellent sliding characteristics are achieved by dramatically decreasing droplets* at the time of film formation.
(2)Formation of New Films
Similar to the TF-778 model, NC control technology that has been accumulated through the development of machine tools was utilized to achieve precision control of the conditions necessary for film formation such as gas flow rate and internal furnace temperature regulation. In addition to enabling the formation of films with high quality and performance exceeding that of existing products, it provides a furnace that is perfect for the formation of new films.
Due to the stagnation of the machine tools business, Toyo has anticipated decreased sales and profits for three consecutive years until this fiscal year. In order to reverse this trend starting from FY 2014, Toyo must not only reorganize the machine tools business, but also raise the level of the automobile parts and surface treatment business areas. Specific plans are already being implemented for the machine tools business to proactively introduce new products to the market and strengthen the sales structure, as well as for the automobile parts business such as setting up a factory in Thailand.
The key to expanding sales of the surface treatment business is the growing PVD coating market. Installing this new model furnace at the Toyo Head Office and Tokyo Plants not only increases the product appeal of "low-temperature TiC", but also makes it easy to apply it to DLC products and new films for the automobile parts market where there is a promising future. Sales of the surface treatment business for the last fiscal year were 2.5 billion yen and are expected to reach some 2.7 billion yen this year, such that the business is predicted to grow to over 3 billion yen in the medium term.
This refers to the phenomena that occurs when arc discharge happens on a target, the raw materials for coating film, causing localized liquefaction of the target, followed by the target to be scattered while it is solidifying, and this results in droplets adhering to the coated workpiece.