ECHT 2020 focuses on carburizing, carbonitriding and carbon-based surface engineering

From 30 November to 2 December, VWT, the 'Vereniging voor Warmtebehandelingstechniek' (Association for Heat Treatment Technology’), in collaboration with A3TS, is organising a three-day conference on carburizing, carbonitriding and carbon-based surface layers in Antwerp. (is new date for postponed March edition due to corona crisis)

Carbon, as one of the most important elements in steel, provides the desired properties in the core, the case and on the surface. The optimum properties for the case and the core are mainly obtained by thermochemical heat treatments such as carburizing and carbonitriding. The optimum surface properties in numerous applications are obtained by various carbon-based engineering techniques, including PVD and CVD.

Application area

There are many specific and application-based processes and techniques available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Some of them are still in the development or optimisation phase and other existing processes are being improved by new scientific insights from specialised institutes. The field of application of carburizing and related techniques is very broad and is used in almost all sectors of the technology industry.

The constant evolution and demand for new applications creates a permanent need for improvement of existing processes, in addition to the development of new processes and techniques. The driving forces behind this evolution are higher quality requirements, increasing component performance, profitability, competitiveness and growing environmental requirements. The use of computers, numerical methods, specific software and electronic equipment are playing an increasingly important role in heat treatment.  For each of these themes, the conference aims to provide a clear insight to all those directly or indirectly involved in the carburizing of steel and related techniques.


The official programme with the lectures is available on the website.

The following topics will be discussed here:

  • New trends and challenges
  • Use of numerical methods for the simulation and development of processes
  • Industry 4.0
  • Microstructure and internal characterisation
  • Carbon-based layers
  • Low-pressure carbonisation
  • Diffusion hardening of stainless steel

In addition to the lectures, a technical poster session is also planned. During a 'table-top' exhibition, a number of companies will present their activities. Sirris will present the capabilities of its testlabs at its stand. Here you will have the opportunity to ask questions about possible tests to the attending experts.

More information about the conference, which will take place in Antwerp from 30 November to 2 December 2020, can be found here.

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