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Nanofilms are extremely thin coatings used to modify surface properties of materials and incorporate new functions. The solutions provided are based on multiple applications that are used in sectors highly relevant for the European economy such as energy, automotion and office automation.
In order to further research actions in this field, Bilbao hosted the fourth edition of ECNF 2016, the European Conference on Nanofilms last week at the Bizkaia Aretoa Centre of the UPV/EHU.
The conference, jointly organised by the Basque Technology Centre IK4-TEKNIKER and the University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU provided a forum where there were an exchange of knowledge between scientists, research organisations and private sector stakeholders. It also intended to strengthen ties between the different stakeholders involved in the research and development of advanced coatings in order to explore new collaboration pathways in the future.
The event was opened by Ms. Amaia Esquisabel, Director for Scientific Policies of the Basque Government followed by a lecture from the director of the Fraunhofer IST, Wolfgham Diehl, an expert and leader of the of the world’s most outstanding research centre devoted to coatings and nanofilms.
The programme featured an extensive range of papers that address issues such as tribological coatings, processes applied to transition from nanoparticles to nanostructured coatings or new materials applicable to ion lithium batteries.
“Nanofilms can be found in our daily lives. From anti-reflex coatings for glasses to the extra-thin metal sheet coating used inside bags of chips, from photovoltaic modules that transform sunlight into electrical power to low friction components used for engine components”, said Javier Barriga, an IK4-TEKNIKER researcher, as proof of how relevant these solutions actually are.
Within the vast research experience of the organisation, IK4-TEKNIKER has been working on nanofilm characterisation since 1990. During this period, research actions have been carried out for the automotive sector and renewables and major developments have taken place in terms of absorbent solar coatings, anti-reflecting, hydrophobic or protective coatings, among other applications.