Polymers and Cold Plasmas
Keywords:Cold plasma, Plasma polymerisation, Plasma treatment
In the last 15 years the use of plasma for materials processing has received a great amount of interest. The scope of possible applications is expanding rapidly and covers a large range of different fields. Applications may be found in microelectronics, food packaging, decorative and functional coatings; many different materials as metals, semiconductors, ceramics or polymers are involved by the plasma technology as bulk material, surface or interface. Plasma treatment is probably the most versatile surface treatment technique. Different types of gases such as argon, oxygen, nitrogen, fluorine, water etc. can produce the unique surface properties required by various applications. For example, O2 plasma treatment can increase the surface energy of polymers, whereas fluorine-containing plasma treatment can decrease the surface energy and improve the chemical inertness. Cross-linking at a polymer surface can be introduced by noble gas plasmas. Thin polymer films with unique chemical and physical properties are produced by plasma polymerisation. This technology is still in its infancy, and the plasma chemical process is not fully understood. The present article gives a short and non-exhaustive introduction on plasma polymer interaction and our activities in this field.
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Copyright (c) 2001 Swiss Chemical Society
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