Introduction to Surface Engineering and Functionally Engineered Materials
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Virtually every advance in thin film, energy, medical, tribological materials technologies has resulted from surface engineering and engineered materials. Surface engineering involves structures and compositions not found naturally in solids and is used to modify the surface properties of solids and involves application of thin film coatings, surface functionalization and activation, and plasma treatment. Engineered materials are the future of thin film technology. Engineered structures such as superlattices, nanolaminates, nanotubes, nanocomposites, smart materials, photonic bandgap materials, metamaterials, molecularly doped polymers and structured materials all have the capacity to expand and increase the functionality of thin films and coatings used in a variety of applications and provide new applications. New advanced deposition processes and hybrid processes are being used and developed to deposit advanced thin film materials and structures not possible with conventional techniques a decade ago. Properties can now be engineered into thin films that achieve performance not possible a decade ago.