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Surface coating with carbon


The coating of surfaces with carbon is an Structure and properties of acetylene

alternative to separating and insulating with carbon coats
graphite suspensions, waxes, emulsions, etc. Acetylene carbon particles form a very fine, jet black
The carbon is applied with an acetylene/oxy- powder. They consist to 98 – 100 percent of pure car-
gen or acetylene/air flame. On being burnt, bon, contain virtually no volatile or extractable compo-
nents and are not soluble in water or wettable. The
the acetylene separates into carbon and coats produced with the Carboflam® process consist of
hydrogen and forms a thin layer of carbon on these almost globular particles, which are lined up one
the surrounding surface. behind the other in a chain. Each of these particles
consists of a large number of small crystals in a size
range of 2 – 3 nm. The crystals, in turn, consist of a
row of graphite layers mostly 3 – 5, which then form
Carbon in the Carboflam® process the almost globular shape of the particles. The particles
are sized approx. 40 – 50 nm.
The coating of surfaces with carbon is often called
sooting. Many users, however, see soot as something The coats themselves lie parallel to each other. Each
negative, associating it with smoking chimneys and the can contain 30 C6 rings. In contrast to graphite, the C6
black exhaust fumes of diesel vehicles. All-in-all un- rings are pushed against each other irregularly. The lat-
wanted and, from an ecological and health point of tice constants of the carbon crystals also differ signifi-
view, dubious combustion products. cantly from those for pure graphite. This could explain
why acetylene carbon does not have a lubricating
There is, however, another class of materials, namely effect. Its inflammation temperature in air is approx.
industrial soot or, more precisely, carbon black. It is 600 °C. Chemicals have virtually no effect at all on it. Its
produced under exactly defined conditions and is gen- surface activity is low, i.e. it does not influence the
erally physiologically safe. For this reason, therefore, we materials with which it comes into contact. The thermal
only speak of carbon coating in connection with the conductivity of acetylene carbon is 25 percent of the
Carboflam® process, and not of sooting. value of a graphite suspension:
λc = 0.104 W/mK / λG = 0.422 W/mK at 100 °C, i.e.
In the Carboflam® process pure acetylene is burnt the carbon has a very good insulating effect.
under defined and reproducible conditions in such a
way that 90 to 95 percent of the resultant carbon is
deposited on the surface being coated. As a result of Burner principle
the short coating period (less than 0.1 second in glass
manufacture and less than one second in aluminium The carbon coat is applied using an outside mixing
extrusion moulding), the workplace concentration of burner, a so-called air shield burner. In this burner the
harmful substances is significantly lower than when fuel gas stream (acetylene) is shielded by an oxygen or
spraying and then burning oils or suspensions. air stream, the air shield (figure 1). This helps to sta-
bilise the flame and to accelerate the carbon particles
kinetically. It also prevents carbon from being let off into
the surroundings.

Fields of application
Air or O2
Acetylene C2H2
Casting processes:
• Chill casting
} for copper, lead,
Oxygen C2H2/O2
Acetylene C2H2
• Continuous casting aluminium, grey cast iron
Air or O2

Moulding processes:
• Extrusion moulding
• Compression moulding } for glass, aluminium

Annealing processes:
• Metal powder

Figure 1 Principle Carboflam® burner

0.04 500 l/h 1000 l/h

The gas is ignited by a permanently burning, neutral-
ly set acetylene/oxygen flame. This flame is simultane-
ously used for monitoring purposes.
∆m [ g ]
The burner is designed according to the require- 0.03 0.03

ments of the particular production method and the

mould size.

The ignition flame is a premixed flame of acetylene
and oxygen in a mixture of 1:1. It is therefore very
stable vis-à-vis vibrations or side air. 0.01

The coating flame is produced by igniting an acety-

lene/oxygen mixture. Comparisons with other fuel gas-
es containing carbon, e.g. ethylene or propane, have 0

shown that at least twice the carbon yield is attained

with acetylene (figure 2) from the same quantity of gas.
As a result of acetylene's large ignition range with oxy- C2H2 Acetylene
72 % CH4 Methane
22 % C2H2 Acetylene
gen (2.5 – 93 percent by volume acetylene in mixture), 6 % C3H8 Propane

the carbon quantity can be dosed well. When the para-

Figure 2 Carbon quantity related to gas quantity
meters of gas pressure and burner distance are kept
constant, the coat is reproducible. The coat thickness
depends on the gas quantity, the acetylene/oxygen
mixing ratio and the coating time.


Processes mould for coating. The coating time is approx. 3/10 of

a second.

Moulding processes Commercial glass is usually manufactured in revolv-

ing machines in one step. Coating is carried out as in
Container ware and commercial glass container ware production in two phases.

This field groups the following products: Oxygen O2

Acetylene C2H2
Container ware
• Glass bottles
• Flacons
• Preserving jars
Flushing phase
Commercial glass
• Drinking glasses
• Bowls
• Vases Oxygen O2
Acetylene C2H2
Container ware is largely produced in so-called indi-
vidual section machines. These machines consist of
several individual sections, mostly six to 12 per
machine. One to four moulds per section can be filled Coating phase
with glass at the same time. The centre distance
between the moulds ranges between 4" and 6". The
glass is shaped in two steps:
Figure 3 Coating principle for hollow glass moulds
The so-called gob is manufactured in the blank
mould with compressed air or a press level. The final Burner design
shape is formed in the postform with compressed air.
Thus the terms blow-blow or press-blow. Thanks to a module system, the burners can be
adapted to the respective moulds. Burners come in the
The principle for the coating of moulds for glass form of one-nozzle burners with and without water
manufacture is shown in figure 3. It is always done in cooling (figure 4), which are mainly used in revolving
the blank mould. machines for the production of commercial glass, as
well as two and three-nozzle burners, which are primar-
Carbon coating is carried out in the closed mould in ily used in individual section machines. These burners
two phases. can be designed for various mould centre distances
(4" – 6") (figure 5).
The first is the so-called flushing phase, in which the
air cushion in the mould is expelled or diluted with oxy- The gas supply for acetylene and oxygen is con-
gen to create an inflammable atmosphere. In the sec- trolled with solenoid valves. The gas quantities are reg-
ond phase acetylene is added and ignited, thereby pro- ulated with regulating valves and corresponding pres-
ducing the carbon coat. Coating is carried out in vari- sure. The gas supply is shown in figure 6.
ous cycle intervals, depending on the product. The
burner must be positioned in the centre above the

Double extraction point


Burner, one-nozzle

Outlet station
flashback arrester

To burner

Burner, one-nozzle
with water cooling
Figure 6 Supply principle Carboflam®

Figure 4 Design principle of a Carboflam® burner, one-nozzle

Flat glass and industrial glass

This includes the following products:

Flat glass:
• Automobile glass
• Glass bricks
Two-nozzle burner • Wire-reinforced glass

Industrial glass:
• Borosilicate glass
• Ampoules
• Tubes

Carbon coating in flat glass production is carried out

Three-nozzle burner with special burners. In the production of automobile
Figure 5 Design principle of Carboflam® burners,
glass, for example, point-like coating is required. The
two and three-nozzle principle of application remains the same.

Borosilicate glass is also coated with a special burn-

On request a pneumatic module with controller can er, a so-called flat burner without nozzles.
be delivered to position the burner above the mould.
This module is also suitable for individual section


Aluminium extrusion moulding Continuous casting of copper

Figure 7 shows coating in extrusion moulding. The In the production of copper blooms (figure 9) the
aluminium billet is pressed through a die to form a fin- casting wheels are coated to prevent the molten cop-
ished aluminium section. The carbon coat prevents the per from sticking to the copper casting wheel.
pressure ram and billet from sticking together. The
burner is operated with acetylene and air. The casting wheel has a trapezoidal shape, which is
restricted on the long side by a steel band. The casting
wheel itself is made of copper. The casting wheel and
Coating burner Aluminium billet Finished steel band are coated permanently.

Molten copper
Pressure ram
Carbon coat

Figure 7 Billet coating in aluminium extrusion moulding

Casting Steel band

Casting processes

Grey cast iron

Figure 9 Coating of casting wheels in the production
of copper blooms
Figure 8 shows coating of chills for small castings in
a revolving machine. The carbon forms a separating
layer between casting and chill. The burner is operated Annealing processes
with acetylene/air.
Metal powder annealing

In the production of sintered metal parts, metal pow-

der is sprayed with water and then annealed in a re-
ducing atmosphere. For this the powder is poured
쐇 Casting about 5 cm thick on plates sized 0.6 x 1.0 m
Acetylene burner
(figure 10).

Coating with carbon makes it easier to separate the

powder cake from the plate after annealing. No sepa-
쐃 Coating 쐋 Ejection rating agent residues are left in the powder. The plates
of the casting
also require virtually no cleaning.
Chill rotation

Figure 8 Coating of chills

Increase in product quality through
Annealing furnace


Figure 10 Coating of plates in metal powder annealing

Reduction in workplace concentrations of harmful sub-

stances through
• specific and optimally dosed application of the car-
bon coat
• short coating times
• falling away of special cleaning processes for

• good insulation properties of the carbon coat, thus

reduction in the formation of cold waves in glass

Reduction in the number of rejects through

• complete and residue-free separation

Increase in mould lifetime through

• falling away of mechanical stressing through manual
application and cleaning processes
N2 / H2

Flexible adaptation to automatic production cycles

• short coating times
• easy control
• modular hardware

Carboflam® is a versatile process that can be used
in many applications. Thanks to the good separating
and insulating effect of the carbon, the different require-
ments of users can be met. The reduction in workplace
concentrations of vapours and mists, which arise when
using oils and emulsions, is of special interest. The
dirtying of revolving and individual section machines is
a special problem in the glass industry. Carboflam® is
also used primarily to improve the quality of the glass.
In the metal-processing industry the focus lies more on
the good separating effect and chemical neutrality of
the carbon vis-à-vis the product and mould.

Thanks to the module system for the construction of

the burners, individual adaptation to revolving and indi-
vidual section machines is possible.

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