AeonClad has developed a family of small lab reactors (typically with volumes of about 1-liter) that are used to develop new material combinations including treatment and deposition processes. While it is often possible to leverage previous work to guide the development of coatings, the first step is to run a series of samples to explore a variety of treatments quickly. Sometime just 5 samples, made of the course of 3 days is enough to determine the best type of treatment for a given application. Then, a more focused study can help provide proof of concept information at AeonClad and through samples provided to an interested customer. Tests at AeonClad can include solubility studies, thermal testing, basic strength testing and via time purchased on external machines, SEM, SEM with FIB, XPS and others. The chemistry can be refined based on the results of the testing and both a recipe and the characteristics of the treatment can be determined.
AeonClad also performs a basic economics assessment at this stage to make sure that the treatment being developed will be viable (meaning that all parties will benefit) when the process is scaled to production.