Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS have developed a heat-resistant ceramic ink that can be used to mark metal components. The ink, which is called Ceracode©, can withstand temperatures of over 1,000 degrees Celsius without being damaged. This makes it possible to mark metal components that are processed in high-temperature environments, such as those used in the automotive industry.
The ink is made from a mixture of ceramic nanoparticles and a polymer binder. When the ink is applied to a metal surface and heated, the ceramic nanoparticles fuse together to form a hard, durable coating. The coating can then be printed with a data matrix code, which can be scanned to retrieve information about the component, such as its manufacturing date, serial number, and material composition.
The development of Ceracode© could have a number of benefits for the manufacturing industry. For example, it could be used to track and trace metal components throughout the production process, which could help to prevent counterfeiting and improve quality control. The ink could also be used to optimize production processes by providing real-time data about the performance of individual components.
The Ceracode© system is already available on the market through project partner Senodis Technologies GmbH. Manufacturing companies can install the system and put it into operation with ease, even if they are retrofitting existing machinery. The data matrix printers used as well as the scanners are compatible with existing industry standards.
The development of Ceracode© is a significant breakthrough in the field of metal marking. The ink's heat resistance and durability make it suitable for a wide range of applications, and it could have a major impact on the manufacturing industry.