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HARDION is a technology for implanting ions into surfaces that was first tried out during the 1970s. Many other tests followed at various research facilities and showed that the treatment can noticeably improve the mechanical and tribological features and corrosion-resistance of metals. Yet the time and money needed for the technology means it has so far remained practically unused in industry. This is all set to change thanks to IONICS SA, a Belgian startup that is committed to becoming a leading supplier in functionalized surface treatment. The company has chosen HANNOVER MESSE 2018 to showcase its IonLab, a HARDION-technology prototype on the brink of being launched onto the market.

The IONICS IonLab has sufficiently enhanced the previously uneconomical HARDION ion implantation technology for it to be used on an industrial scale. As a result, it finally makes financial sense to use this innovative and eco-friendly technology to improve a material’s surface properties. IONICS is supported by the Walloon industry initiative WALIBEAM, which is made up of companies from the glass, metal and polymer sectors. The partnership is providing industrial companies with a range of pilot installations to continue testing this innovative key technology in realistic, professional conditions. A fully functional IonLab prototype can be inspected up close at the IONICS stand in Hannover.