Sandvik has developed two new precoated metal strip steels that are
intended to boost productivity and reduce environmental constraints associated
with plating and coating.
"Our diverse stainless steels can
be coated with several layers of metals like nickel, tin, silver or similar,
which increases product performance through high surface conductivity,
corrosion protection and wear resistance," says Jeremy Gaspard, marketing
specialist – Americas for Sandvik, referring to a new grade for electronic
applications called Santronic.
By combining an advanced vacuum process with nanotechnology, Sandvik
says it can produce strip steel with consistent coating layers as thin as 20
Another product line, called Sandvik Decorex, features a range of
colored stainless steels that were developed for decorative parts for
appliances, consumer electronics, packaging and automotive.
Sandvik says that Decorex strip can be cold formed and bent to close
radii without affecting the color quality due to excellent adhesion between the
base material and the coating.
The precoated strips are more expensive than noncoated stainless steels,
but Sandvik would not provide any examples of pricing.
"Generally, our clients have a total savings of 15 to 30 percent over
traditional processes," says Gaspard. "This is based on their current supply chain
and manufacturing process."
Decorex is generally supplied on 304 stainless steel substrate for
formability purposes. First the customer selects a thickness, texture and
width. Then Sandvik produces the customer color choice using its technology
coating process, which is similar to but more advanced then commonly used PVD
(physical vapor deposition) processes.
Santronic is generally supplied on 301 SS substrate for tensile strength
and fatigue resistance purposes. The buying process also starts with a customer
selecting a thickness and width. Then Sandvik produces the coatings on one or
two sides of the base material using its technology coating process.
Prices depend on the color, the texture, the thickness, the width and
The energy consumed to produce one square meter of Santronic or Decorex
is 1.264 kWh, says Sandvik. Other processes consume far more energy, according to Sandvik.
The Beam Store from Suitable Technologies is managed by remote workers from places as diverse as New York and Sydney, Australia. Employees attend to store visitors through Beam Smart Presence Systems (SPSs) from the company. The systems combine mobility and video conferencing and allow people to communicate directly from a remote location via a screen as well as move around as if they are actually in the room.
An MIT research team has invented what they see as a solution to the need for biodegradable 3D-printable materials made from something besides petroleum-based sources: a water-based robotic additive extrusion method that makes objects from biodegradable hydrogel composites.
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