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Posted: February 4, 2008
Thin Coatings Are Big Business
(Nanowerk News) The substance is called Polytetrafluoroethylene, PTFE for short. It has the same chemical make-up as Teflon, and is most often associated with the non-stick surfaces of cookware. But this common coating can be used for more than keeping your egg yolk from breaking according to Hilton G. Bryce Lewis of GVD Corporation. In PTFE, Lewis sees a durable plastic substance that can be used to coat just about anything.
Derived from research done at Massachusetts Institute of Technology with Professor Karen Gleason, GVD's coating system is based in a process called chemical vapor deposition (CVD), which uses a gas rather than a traditional liquid, evenly coating items without exposing them to solvents or extreme heat.
GVD's coatings can also be as thin as five nanometers - a ten thousandth of a human hair. The coating is so sensitively applied that it can waterproof a napkin without noticeably changing its weight.
"We realized that there was a fair commercial interest," Lewis said. "There was some clamor for it." Rather than sell the rights to their invention though, Lewis opted instead to trade in his lab coat for a business suit.
Drawing business from every industry from kitchen appliances to nanotechnology, GVD has never had to pursue investors beyond it's initial founder's capital. Instead, he has created a sustainable business by creating a simple solution to a difficult and lucrative problem.