ESR 7: Green PVD surface engineering for tribology

Objectives: To quantify the “greenness” of PVD coating systems when specifically chosen for example tribological systems; metal gears for wind turbines and polymer gears for process industries. To develop PVD coatings for the specific applications when balancing the energy/resource use and the final function of the system. To conduct a performance versus greenness evaluation of numerous generic coating types for these two applications.

ESR: Larissa Ihara (Brazil)









The aim to take part in building a world that runs on clean energy is what drew me to Engineering in the first place. Tribology has the potential to help the energy industry be less wasteful and thus more environmentally beneficial, so I became passionate for it. This project has sparked my interest due to its relevance. The objective to measure the ‘greenness’ of PVD coatings applied to prominent industrial tribological systems greatly enthuses me, as it is the sort of work that I believe is indispensable to the scenario we live in. 

Previous studies:
Bachelor's degree: Mechanical Engineering, University of São Paulo, Brazil
Master's degree: Mechanical Engineering, University of São Paulo, Brazil

PhD double degree at: University of Leeds & University of Coimbra

Expected Results: Whether a system for surface engineering is “green” or not depends very much on the proposed application. There are complex factors linking the energy use in production, the consumables used, the process time to the benefits that are gained in the performance of that system that must be considered. This project will deliver for the first time:

  • A full evaluation of the system greenness versus the functionality for two example applications

  • An identification of the critical components of the PVD surface engineering system that render it green