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Trumpf Hüttinger acquires microwave tech firm HBH

24 Jan 2020

With expansion of existing plasma excitation methods, Trumpf aims to target new areas of business based on microwave technology.

Laser and machine tool giant Trumpf’s high-tech division Trumpf Hüttinger has acquired HBH Microwave, based in Stutensee, near Karlsruhe, Germany. Terms of the deal were not revealed.

This acquisition adds semiconductor-based, solid-state microwave generators to TRUMPF Hüttinger’s technology portfolio. These devices are used in industrial heating, drying and plasma applications, as well as in communications and radar technology. Another important market the company has in its sights is particle accelerators for research, medicine and industry.

For example, the energy required for Trumpf’s CO2 lasers is supplied by the powerful RF generators from Hüttinger; while generators manufactured by Hüttinger create plasmas for displays and other applications.

Microwaves and plasma processing

“This acquisition gives us a real boost in the trending field of microwave power generators,” commented Rafal Bugyi, managing director of Trumpf Hüttinger in Freiburg. “In the plasma processing market, which is an important area of our business, there is a noticeable trend toward higher frequencies in the microwave range. HBH has many years of experience in developing technology and applications for solid-state microwave generators. This gives us a solid basis for making a calculated transition from the vacuum-tube-based magnetron to solid-state microwave power generators.”

Plasma-generators operating in the medium and radio frequency range are used in thin-film coating applications and processes. Plasma-generator applications include the large-area coating of glass and foils, as well as the deposition and ablation of materials on semiconductor chips, data storage media, displays and solar cells.

The acquisition will also enable Trumpf Hüttinger to expand its business in the particle accelerator market. The most common areas of application for particle accelerators are in medicine and in industry. Medical applications include radiation and particle beam therapy in the treatment of cancers.

HBH managing director Guido Baumann commented, “By combining our expertise in microwave technology with that of Trumpf Hüttinger in industrial manufacturing, we will gain access to much bigger markets.” HBH Microwave was founded in 1999 and currently employs 50 people at its premises in Stutensee.

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