Ford Announces Plasma Transferred Wire Arc Thermal Spray Process
Ford has announced a new plasma coating process that allows them to recycle old engines, significantly cutting down on materials and CO2 emissions in the process. The use of a thermal spray ostensibly means that used cylinder blocks can be remanufactured instead of scrapped, a process that produces half the emissions as it would to manufacture a new engine altogether.
“We have taken a process that was originally developed to enhance performance models such as the all-new Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R and used it to remanufacture engines that might otherwise be scrapped. It is just one example of how Ford is looking to reduce its environmental footprint through a range of innovative measures,” said Juergen Wesemann, manager, Vehicle Technologies and Materials, Ford Research and Advanced Engineering.
The process, using what is called the Plasma Transferred Wire Arc thermal spray, is being researched and developed at the Ford Research and Innovation Center in Aachen, Germany. Additional sustainable approaches being developed at the facility include the use of aluminum, carbon fiber, and high-strength steels as well as materials manufactured from tomato fibers, bioplastics, and shrubs.