World market leader from Ulm with artificial diamonds


Press, Ulm News, 2012.04. GFD Managing Director Dr. Peter Gluche was a doctoral student at the University of Ulm and founded the Gesellschaft für Diamantprodukte mbH (GFD) together with Dr. Andre Flöter. Today, GFD develops and produces artificial diamond coatings with eight employees.

The diamond-coated precision parts, for example in the form of razor-sharp blades for the paper and film industry, ultra-precise gears or diamond dials for the Swiss watch industry or milling cutters for machining difficult-to-cut materials, are in demand worldwide. This is because the coatings researched and applied by GFD enable a service life that is up to 1000 times longer than conventional steel blades and tools. Wear and tear, and therefore machine service life, are radically reduced.

Movement parts from Ulm keep luxury watches from Cartier, Jäger le Coultre and Ulysee Nardin going. “These watches are virtually indestructible,” emphasizes the entrepreneur. The researchers in Ulm are currently developing a luxury wet shaver that can be used for over 1000 shaves.

In recent years, turnover has grown by an average of 30 percent – as has the amount of space required. GFD would therefore like to significantly expand its production and research facilities in Science Park II. The positive business development will continue, as GFD holds over a dozen important patents for artificial diamond production. “We are the world market leader. Other companies can’t do that,” says Dr. Gluche proudly.

“We do the applied research ourselves, the basic research has to be done via the university, as it has very special microscopes,” reports Dr. Gluche on the collaboration with the university. Students here are researching how diamond coatings can be produced artificially, with full hardness and as smooth a surface as possible.

Knowledge transfer is not a one-way street. The GFD has just awarded a two-year research contract to the university. The GFD plans to finance this project with 130,000 euros. Dr. Gluche describes the work and research in the Science City and the Science Parks as “extremely efficient. There is a fantastic development environment here”.

Source: Ulm News, Ralf Grimminger, 02.04.2012