The basics of corona treatment

Corona treatment was introduced in the industrial sector in the year 1951. An engineer in Denmark was requested to find a secure way for apposite printing on plastic surfaces.

Thus, with continuous efforts and experimentation, the engineer decided to come up with a theory that would revolutionize the world of surface treatment. The theory suggested that a high frequency beam or corona discharge would be able to treat the particular surface in a proper manner keeping the heating level in control. The success of corona treatment application led to the establishment of a surface treatment company giving way to further development of the technology.

Treats metal and plastic surfaces

Basically, corona treatment was introduced into the industrial market because of its ability to treat metal and plastic surfaces giving it adhesive properties so that any type of printing or bonding could easily take place on a variety of surfaces.

To be more precise, corona treatment is used to increase a material’s surface tension in an effective way.

By treating the material with a high frequency corona discharge, its surface becomes much more impressible to adhesives, inks and coatings.

The material that needs treatment is revealed in front of the electronic corona discharge. This results in the breakage of oxygen molecules into an atomic form. The atoms are thus allowed to bond with the molecule ends present in the material that’s being treated. Hence, the surface of that material becomes chemically active. Though, one should keep in mind the fact that a surface gone through corona treatment is likely to be debased with the passage of time unless it is coated, bounded in-line or printed on.

Debasement depends on storage conditions and the type of material that has been treated. The cost of equipment and power used in treating the surface of a material play an important part in the process. These depend on the speed, responsiveness, width, and number of sides of the material that require treatment.

Corona treatment usually involves the handling of surfaces made from polypropylene, vinyl, foils, polyethylene, metalized surfaces, paper, PVC, paperboard stock, PET and other such materials. If you are interested in knowing more about how to treat plastic surfaces, we recommend you read our knowledgebase article regarding that matter: Adhesion and Surface Treatment of Plastic, or simply contact our experts and get an answer directly from them: ask our experts a question.

Examples of treatable components

The equipment is installed in a place that’s aligned with the laminating, printing, or coating process. A corona treater can also be directly installed over the cast film or blown film expeller. One of the major benefits of installing a corona treater on an extruder is that new material is more impressible to the treatment. Electrical cables, automotive components, 3D parts, medical devices, pipes & tubes, board & foam, domestic appliances, narrow webs (both conductive and non-conductive) and extruded profiles are just a few of the many components that are processed with corona.

These components are processed for modification before they can be used on an industrial level. The modification process involves coating, painting, sealing, laminating, sealing and labeling etc. Areas of education, automotives, research establishments, injection molding, extrusion, manufacturing of medical devices, general manufacturing, and test labs etc are more likely the ones to be using this kind of treatment.

Video showing how corona treatment works: