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Bekaert Becomes Top Supplier to NASCAR Teams
A record number of coated valves produced in the US following Bekaert's recent expansion
Bekaert has announced that its years of investment in research and development of DLC coatings has resulted in a record number of 15.000 coated valves, produced in the Research Triangle Park (RTP) plant in Raleigh-Durham, NC, US early this year.
In order to comply with the increased demand of customers for shorter delivery terms and higher volumes, Bekaert has recently expanded its production capacity at the RTP plant in Raleigh-Durham, NC. This production expansion enables Bekaert to apply DLC coatings on higher volumes of race engine components.
Bekaert has become the number one supplier to the Formula 1, Rally, DTM, Formula 3 and NASCAR businesses with its high quality Bekaert Cavidur® coatings and one-stop service. The unique composition and structure of Bekaert Cavidur® results in the most reliable surface engineered solutions for highly loaded engine components. Bekaert has been a successful and reliable supplier of DLC coatings on race engine components for 15 years now and is still continuously researching and developing new advanced coatings and surface engineering solutions to the demanding performance requirements of its customers. The fact that Bekaert DLC coatings are adopted by a majority of NASCAR teams illustrates the confidence of this highly demanding market.
DLC coatings for the new generation of race engines
Bekaert has spent tremendous research on DLC coatings that are specially designed for the new generation of race car engines. The switch to unleaded fuel for all three of NASCAR’s top divisions Sprint Cup, Craftsman Trucks, and Nationwide series has taken up several months, with a full implementation in all series at the start of the 2007 season. Apart from the detonation issue, which had to be resolved by using complex mixtures of additives, the use of unleaded fuel also had severe consequences for the valve train, for which the presence of lead was known to have a lubrication effect. In order to compensate this, diamond-like coatings (DLC’s) are applied onto the valves so as to make them more durable.
DLC’s are amorphous carbon based coatings with a high hardness and a low coefficient of friction. These coatings are thin, chemically inert and have a low surface roughness. The standard thickness of these layers is situated between 0,002 and 0,004 mm. Due to the low friction properties and high wear resistance, these coatings are commonly used on highly loaded engine components.
For more information, visit http://www.bekaert.com.
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