Hardide Coatings Secures Significant Grant For New Drilling Industry Hardfacing Coating
Advanced surface coating specialist Hardide Coatings has secured a grant of up to £250,000 under the Technology Strategy Board’s ‘Smart’ scheme to commercialise a novel coating that will enable a new generation of hardfacing materials for use on drilling tool and wear parts for industries including oil and gas, mining and construction.
The ‘development of prototype’ grant from the UK’s innovation agency will part-fund a two year project to further develop, manufacture and test a new Hardide coating for use in a hardfacing material that will enable drilling tools and high wear parts to operate at peak performance in severely abrasive environments where current technologies fail.
The new material will complement Hardide’s existing range of wear and erosion resistant coatings and offer a level of durability and protection that is not currently available from any surface technology in the market.
Offshore drilling is one of the main markets for the technology. Oil and gas drilling environments are becoming increasingly hostile as exploration and production moves to deeper and harsher waters to exploit remaining reserves. Existing protective echnologies are failing to provide the required drilling tool life and the cost of equipment failure in these locations can quickly run into millions of pounds in rig downtime alone.
Philip Kirkham, CEO of Hardide Coatings, said: “The successful completion of this project will produce an innovative new coating and hardfacing material that will offer users of drilling and downhole tools for the oil and gas industry, as well as mining and construction equipment an unprecedented level of wear and erosion resistance. It has the potential to unlock new drilling and cutting capabilities which will be of extremely high value to users.
“Laboratory development has been underway for the last five years. The ‘Smart’ grant will allow us to establish a prototype manufacturing facility at our plant in Bicester, Oxfordshire and fast track the project to conclusion in two years.”The grant will pay up to £250,000 against agreed expenditure over two years.
‘Smart’ is a Technology Strategy Board scheme offering funding to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to engage in R&D projects in the strategically important areas of science, engineering and technology, from which successful new products, processes and services could emerge.The Smart scheme supports R&D projects which offer potentially significant rewards and could stimulate UK economic growth.
About Hardide Coatings
Hardide Coatings Limited is the UK operating company of Hardide plc.
Hardide Coatings produce a range of advanced surface engineering coatings that protect the internal and external surfaces of components from wear, erosion and acidic corrosion. Applied by the gas-phase deposition of nano-particulate tungsten carbide/tungsten, the binder-free coatings offer a unique combination of ultra-hardness, excellent toughness and ductility. The coatings can be precision applied to interior and complex geometries, enabling a level of design flexibility that is not possible with alternative technologies. The coatings are proven to outperform competing technologies across many measures and offer dramatic cost savings through reduced downtime and extended part life. They are in widespread use in aggressive wear or chemical environments in industries worldwide including oil and gas, flow control, aerospace and advanced engineering. For more information, visit www.hardide.com.
About The Technology Strategy Board
The Technology Strategy Board is the UK’s innovation agency. Its goal is to accelerate economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation. Sponsored by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Technology Strategy Board brings together business, research and the public sector, supporting and accelerating the development of innovative products and services to meet market needs, tackle major societal challenges and help build the future economy. For more information, visit www.innovateuk.org.
SOURCE: Hardide Coatings