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Heat treatments


Ionic nitriding is a thermochemical process involving enrichment and diffusion, which exploits the properties in plasma in vacuum to produce surface hardening, to a hardness and depth which vary with the material being treated.

This hardening results in increased resistance to wear and fatigue, and increases the surface hardness by diffusing nitrogen into the matrix.

During this low pressure process, a potential difference is applied between the part and the wall of the furnace in which it is being treated.

This generates a luminescent plasma discharge around the part with a high level of ionisation. In plasma nitriding, the surface of the part is enriched with nitrogen. On the surface directly charged by the ions, nitrogen rich nitrides form and decompose, thus releasing active nitrogen on the surface of the part. This makes it easy to shield the part with a metal mask over the affected surfaces.

Ionic nitriding modifies the surface of the part to the specified characteristics. It is possible to obtain layers and profiles of custom hardness, by adjusting the gas mixture. A wide range of applicable temperatures make many applications possible.
The internal structure of the part is unchanged, as its mechanical elasticity, since the treatment only affects the surface.

Ionic nitriding is thus suited to:

  • Ferrous materials;
  • Sintered steels;
  • Cast iron;
  • Tool steels (with a chrome content in excess of 12%);
  • Stainless steels and nickel-based alloys (with special thermal cycles).


  • Lower deformation;
  • No or controllable white coating;
  • Excellent surface finish;
  • Denser, less porous compound layers;
  • Low treatment temperature (<500°C);
  • Reduced coefficient of friction;
  • Increased fatigue and corrosion resistance;
  • No reject parts;
  • Possibility of nitriding all steels, including stainless steels, titanium and alloys.

Our double chamber ionic nitriding equipment can handle parts up to 2100 mm in length.

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