22. January 2015   12:08 am
Andy Stecher

Andy Stecher
Elgin, IL


Photo courtesy Trysil via Flickr

I’m not much of a downhill skier myself – which is a good thing, as the terrain here in Chicagoland tends to be pretty flat – but I have many friends both here in the States and in Europe who revel in a day on the slopes. And I’ve got some exciting news for them.

Back in the day, a good coat of hand-applied wax was the only way you could hope to improve the performance of your skis. But now, as with so many things, Plasmatreat is helping to bring ski technology to a new level.

Plasma Nano-Tech at Envipark in Turin, Italy has been working to develop and file a patent application for the innovative “plasma ski,” the goal of which is to make skiers faster and more successful.

Davide Damosso, Director for Innovation and Development at Envipark, notes that the idea was to apply the maximum amount of absorbable wax to the running surfaces of racing skis – made from sintered UHMW-PE (ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene) – to improve sliding properties and wax retention. This was achieved using a targeted plasma treatment that modifies the functional characteristics of the surface coating.

“The combination of our Openair plasma technology and PlasmaPlus atmospheric nano-coating process offered the perfect conditions for this project,” says Giovanni Zambon, head of Plasmatreat’s Italian subsidiary, who was responsible for supplying the plasma systems and providing Envipark with technical support during the test phase.

After nine months and 40 laboratory tests, the results have been published – and they are very impressive! Thanks to the microfine plasma cleaning, high level of activation, and plasma coating, which was developed specifically for this purpose and applied with the aid of the PlasmaPlus system, there was a sixfold increase in wax absorption compared with the conventional (but otherwise identical) wax impregnation method.

We are, needless to say, very excited about this – and so is Simone Origone, the world champion speed skier who set a new world record of 252.454 km/hour last March in the French Alps.

“In our discipline we are constantly looking for opportunities to improve our performance,” Origone says. “This new process is extremely interesting. If it transpires that I will be able to ski even faster on snow with this technology, it will prove invaluable to me and the skiing world as a whole.”

Interesting stuff, yes? I am continually amazed by the ingenuity of Plasmatreat’s R&D team and the new, exciting applications for our technology. Perhaps I will see you on the slopes one of these days with your new pair of speedy plasma skis (I will be warm and cozy in the lodge, cheering you on).

8. January 2015   12:17 am
Andy Stecher

Andy Stecher
Elgin, IL

Photo courtesy Nathan Laurell via Flickr

Photo courtesy Nathan Laurell via Flickr

Have you heard the story (likely apocryphal) about Picasso sketching in the park?

A passer-by recognized him and begged him to draw her portrait, which he graciously did. After enthusing about how wonderful it was, the woman asked Picasso how much he owed her for the drawing.

“Five thousand francs, Madame,” the artist replied.

“Five thousand francs?! That’s an outrage! It took you all of five minutes,” she sputtered.

“No, Madame,” Picasso replied coolly. “It took me my entire life.”

Believe it or not, there are parallels to be drawn here between the great Spanish/French artist and Plasmatreat’s plasma technology.

We here at Plasmatreat are particularly excited this New Year’s because we are celebrating 20 years in business in 2015. Our first atmospheric plasma jet sale for the automotive industry took place in Germany in 1995. Since then, both the science and our service have been evolving—and improving—to the point where we are the leader in our industry.

That type of mastery doesn’t come overnight—as Picasso noted, it takes years and years. A lifetime. We take pride in making it look easy, but behind the scenes we are continuing to hone our craft every single day.

It also means, as you may have surmised, that we are not generally the cheapest plasma technology option available. However, when you look at value per dollar spent, we are confident that we are the very best there is (and our ever-growing list of testimonials lets us know that we’re on the right track).

If you are already a customer of ours, thank you for 20 great years…and counting. We look forward to many more.

And if you’re not already a customer, but you’re thinking about it, give us a call. We’d love to talk to you and explain what makes us stand head and shoulders above the competition.

Two decades of experience in the automotive industry have brought us to a level of expertise that is simply unparalleled (even if our portrait sketches still look more like the work of a two-year-old than the next Guernica!).