The main objective of the proposal is the development of multi-purpose, multi-functional surfaces via environmentally friendly plasma electrolytic oxidation (PEO) treatments. In an intelligent way the weakness of the PEO process (the inherent porosity due to the discharges forming the coating is often responsible for poor properties) is used to functionalize the coating using the open pore structure as a reservoir for nanocontainer or to bring particles with certain functionalities deep into the coatings (fast pathways). The main targeted functionalities, are enhanced fault tolerance and active protection against corrosive damage as well as improved tribological behavior. Moreover, to extend this typical field of applications of PEO treatments and address additional industries and aspects (e.g. 3C, ecological), a set of less common functionalities, such as photocatalytic, magnetic, thermo- and electroconductivity will be added. This is challenging and goes far beyond the state-of-the-art introduction via post-treatments. To deal with such sensitive materials, changes in the power supply are required and this is addressed as one of the key points in frame of the project as well.
The essential key of the project is the formation and development of an interdisciplinary R&D partnership, where participants from both academia (5) and private sector (4 SME) participate, promoting and sharing their ideas, expertise, techniques and methods to solve this demanding challenge. This partnership will be beneficial for all participants, since new PEO hardware, environmentally friendly processes and applications important for industry are developed, evaluated and promoted by the research institutions via presentations and publications of the obtained results. Laboratory based training and intersectional transfer of knowledge are the key aspects of the FUNCOAT project, so the partnership gathers the topmost competences to carry out the suggested research program.