Port Washington, New York – A metal coating process for engine cylinders has earned its developers the 36th National Inventor of the Year Award from the Intellectual Property Owners Education Foundation.
Keith Kowalsky, Daniel Marantz and David Cook from Flame-Spray Industries, and Ford Motor Company retiree James Baughman, were recognized for their development of the Plasma Transferred Wire Arc (PTWA) Thermal Spray Apparatus and Method. PTWA is a unique process that deposits a molten metal coating on the internal surfaces of cylinders, such as pipes, pumps and engine bores common in the automotive industry.
The award is given to only one patent each year as recognition for an outstanding achievement in the fields of innovation, creativity and IP rights. Previous winners include the Jarvik Seven artificial heart and the stand-up MRI.
Flame-Spray developed PTWA as a method of replacing expensive cast-iron liners in aluminum engines, which offset the engine’s lighter weight. By using PTWA rather than cast-iron liners, the weight of a V8 engine can be safely and cost-effectively reduce by approximately 2.7 kilograms. The system was used in the manufacture of the 2008 Nissan GT-R.
PTWA can also be used to re-manufacture worn parts, and can be used in many industries, such as aerospace, petrochemical, alternative energy and military industries.