With respect to the development of antibacterial coatings, the benefits of atmospheric plasma technology in general apply: nano-technology, no vacuum batch process, no use of solvents, possible for in-line application etc...
VITO's atmospheric plasma research is dedicated to permanent antibacterial coatings, which inhibit adhesion and growth of bacteria upon contact to the surface.
Most of the existing technologies are based on the release of antimicrobial substances to the environment, e.g. the use of nano-Ag. In the latter case, the bactericidal activity is only achieved when the surface comes in contact with a liquid (water) and the antibacterial effect decreases as a function of time.
VITO's Atmospheric Plasma Team has experience and is still further developping low-cost coatings with permanent antibacterial properties on steel, on food packaging materials and on medical equipment.