There are steel blades that hold their edge for a short time. There are tungsten carbide blades that will last for many days (think razor blades). There’s zirconia ceramic blades that can keep an extremely sharp edge for more than a year.
Now (h/t Technology Review), we learn of a German company that is marketing razor and surgical blades made of carbide coated with nanoparticles of diamond that company says is even sharper than ceramic (like OMG, that’s scary sharp – see video) and so tough they keep their edge for five years.
There isn’t yet a product for personal use, but King C. Gillette must be starting to roll in his grave.
Gesellschaft für Diamantprodukte (GFD) makes these new blades by coating a tungsten razor blade with a diamond film at the cutting edge. At the end of the manufacturing process, GFD uses a oxygen-chlorine plasma method (called PSD by the company, for Plasma Sharpened Diamond) to put the final edge on the blade. GFD says PFD can form an almost atomically sharp cutting edge with a radius of curvature as small as 3 nanometers.
GFD sells other blades for cutting plastic sheeting, but is marketing these new blades under the Diamaze-PSD brand name. Regular tungsten carbide blades can dull pretty quickly when cutting plastic film and foil that often nowadays contains TiO2.
The company also makes diamond micro parts using PSD through a subsidiary company, Diamaze Microparts SA, in Switzerland.
Check out this demonstration of the sharpness: