Chemat Technology

Company Background

Founded in 1990, Chemat Technology has established itself as a world leader in the development of advanced materials via sol-gel technologies. Headquartered in Northridge, California, in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, Chemat moved in 1999 to a 34,100-foot office/industrial building. Its R&D labs are fully equipped with state-of-the-art analytical and processing equipment. Chemat owns facilities for chemical precursor synthesis, design and manufacturing of equipment, and advanced materials processing and characterization (1). Chemat Technology Inc. designs and develops coating equipment and precursors for thin films and coatings research and development. The company offers custom processing equipment, including custom spin-coaters and dip coaters; and chemical precursors, including metal alkoxides and dialkylamides, metal b-dikelonates and carboxylates, organosilanes, colloidal solutions, and nanosize powders. It also provides Chemalux lab equipment that is designed to help optical labs to make lenses; Chemalux lab system, an optical lab system for surfacing and coating applications; OD, CNC, and Rx-digital freeform systems; spin coaters for precise and uniform deposition of thin films and coatings; and sol-gel solutions that are used in chip manufacturing in the microelectronic industry. In addition, the company offers research development services for the development of advanced materials, products, and processing systems for government agencies and industry clients (2).

Suppliers and Buyers

Chemat performs contract R&D for clients in a wide range of market areas including commercial businesses (3a). 

Strategic Partnerships

Chemat’s R&D Division has successfully completed almost one hundred Research & Development contracts for government agencies and industry clients (1).  In the past two decades, Chemat has conducted more than $20 million in R&D for the U.S. government. Their clients include the National Institutes of Health, DARPA and other organizations within the defense, the National Science Foundation, NASA, and the Departments of Energy, Transportation, and Health and Human Services (3a).

Chemat Technology has formed a joint ZCNI-Chemat Sol-Gel Nano Center with Zhejiang-California International Institute of Nanotechnology located in Hangzhou, China.  Zhejiang California International NanoSystems Institute (ZCNI) is a first of its kind research and technology innovation platform in China established on June, 2005 at Hangzhou, Zhejiang, which is the joint effort among Zhejiang Provincial Government, Zhejiang University (ZJU), California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI), and whose mission is to accelerate the application of nanotechnology in biology, medicine, material, information technology, chemistry etc.  This joint R&D center is expected to further strengthen Chemat capabilities to deliver effective and efficient R&D services in the sol-gel technologies to our clients by combination of Chemat’s expertise, experience with low cost talents in China. In addition, the center will be able to serve the growing R&D demands in China (3b).

Innovation and Technology

The sol-gel process is a versatile solution process for making advanced materials, including ceramics and organic-inorganic hybrids. In general, the sol-gel process involves the transition of a solution system from a liquid "sol" (mostly colloidal) into a solid "gel" phase. Utilizing the sol-gel process, it is possible to fabricate advanced materials in a wide variety of forms: ultrafine or spherical shaped powders, thin film coatings, fibers, porous or dense materials, and extremely porous aerogel materials. An overview of various sol-gel processes is illustrated above in a graphical form.   The starting materials used in the preparation of the "sol" are usually inorganic metal salts or metal organic compounds such as metal alkoxides. In a typical sol-gel process, the precursor is subjected to a series of hydrolysis and polymerization reactions to form a colloidal suspension, or a "sol". Further processing of the "sol" makes it possible to make materials in different forms.   Durable thin films with a variety of properties can be deposited on a substrate by spin-coating or dip-coating. When the "sol" is cast into a mold, a "wet gel" will form. With further drying and heat treatment, the "gel" is converted into dense materials. If the liquid in a wet "gel" is extracted under a supercritical condition, a highly porous and extremely low-density material called "aerogel" is obtained. As the viscosity of a "sol" is adjusted into a given viscosity range, fibers can be drawn from the "sol". Ultrafine and uniform powders are formed by precipitation, spray pyrolysis, or emulsion techniques (3c).

Products

  • Total Sol-Gel Solution (3c).

Sources

  1. AZoNano (2013). “Chemat Technology Inc..” Retrieved on September 30, 2013 from www.azonano.com/suppliers.aspx?SupplierID=692
  2. Bloomberg Businessweek (2013, September 30). “Company Overview of Chemat Technology Inc." Retrieved on September 30, 2013 from      http://investing.businessweek.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=117430749
  3. Chemat Technology  (2013). Retrieved on September 30, 2013
    1. “Client Supported R&D” from www.chemat.com/chemattechnology/ClientSupportedRD.aspx
    2. “News” from www.chemat.com/chemattechnology/news.aspx
    3. “Sol-Gel Technology” from www.chemat.com/chemattechnology/SolGel.aspx