Environmentally friendly nitriding technology

Efficient and sustainable solution for your product and your production

Environmentally friendly nitriding technology

Efficient and sustainable solution for your product and your production

Plasma nitriding is a thermochemical diffusion process for surface layer hardening.

It occurs at very low temperatures (350–580°C). Components made out of steel, stainless steel and titanium can be treated. By diffusing nitrogen into the surface, a hardened layer (nitride layer) forms at the surface. This protects the component from wear and corrosion. The nitride layer consists of two component parts. The compound layer, which primarily consists of iron nitrides, and the diffusion layer, in which nitrogen is predominantly dissolved in the material and exists in the form of precipitates with alloying elements of the steel.

In this process, the compound layer is primarily characterised by a high degree of hardness, a low adhesion tendency and the passivatability of the contained iron nitrides. This provides the components with an increased level of resistance to wear through abrasion, deformation, fretting and adhesion, as well as an increased level of corrosion resistance. The diffusion layer possesses a high degree of strength, increased heat resistance and compressive residual stresses. These lead to increased vibration resistance, increased resistance to contact fatigue, to lower heat wear and increased resistance to thermal fatigue when in use, amongst other things.

Depending on the process control, the layer components can be specifically structured during plasma nitriding. As a result, the nitride layer is optimally adapted to the stress of your components in use.

Learn more about the different process versions.

Plasma nitriding

For highly mechanically stressed parts

Plasma nitrocarburising

For parts subjected to corrosion and abrasion


The optional follow-up treatment


Plasma nitriding stainless steel at low temperatures

Partial treatment

Wear protection exactly where it is needed

Properties of nitride layers

The properties and benefits of nitride layers

All processes that we use are only possible due to plasma.

Plasma refers to an electrically conductive gas. It enables “high-temperature surface chemistry at low component temperatures”, opening up unique process techniques for many industries. To generate plasma, a voltage is applied in a vacuum between a component (cathode) and the vessel wall (anode). ELTRO achieved significant progress in the 80s by employing a pulsed discharge with ignition pulses. The pulsing reduces the energy input into the plant, and significantly improves the temperature uniformity. It enables substantial separation of thermal and chemical process control and has opened up what were previously impossible applications. You can learn more about how plasma nitriding works here.

Benefits of the process:

  • Ideal protection against wear
  • Maximum component strengths
  • Low-warpage (high levels of dimensional stability and form retention)
  • Optimum adaptation of the layer to the stress
  • Possibility of partial treatment
  • Reduction in friction coefficients
  • High level of hot hardness and heat resistance
  • Very environmentally friendly

The great feeling of having made a positive contribution

Plasma nitriding is one of the most sustainable processes for surface layer hardening. In particular, the ELTROPULS process meets the toughest requirements for sustainability.
In this regard, it offers significant advantages from an ecological and economic perspective and also in terms of workplace conditions.

Environmentally friendly nitriding technology

Need advice on which process is suitable for your application?

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