The Birth of Metallisation

Metallisation Ltd was established in 1922 and since then has been providing the most advanced thermal spray technology ever seen.

History shows that a postcard sent just after the First World War from Dr Max Ulrich Schoop, inventor of the thermal spray process, to William Ballard, was the reason Metallisation was born.

The Latin message on the postcard read ‘"Mucius Scaevola redivivus", which translated means "Mucius Scaevola returns". It would appear that these three simple Latin words were the catalyst for the birth of Metallisation Ltd in the early 1920s. William Ballard became the first ever Managing Director of Metallisation.

The quote on the postcard refers to a tale from ancient Rome about a brave nobleman named Gaius Mucius who tried to kill the Etruscan King Lars Porsenna, who was holding the city under siege. Unsuccessful, captured and sentenced to burn, Mucius thrust his hand into the flame and showed no sign of pain. His courage impressed Porsenna and he was freed and the Etruscan king held peace talks.

Now, nearly 90 years later, the inspiration of Mucius lives on through Dr Schoop, William Ballard and Metallisation.

Around 1900, Dr Max Ulrich Schoop, from Zurich, began experimenting with lead and zinc by melting and spraying them onto surfaces as a protective coating. In 1909, Dr Schoop successfully patented the use of a combustion process, of oxygen fuel, to melt wire and propel it directly onto a substrate. He secured his second patent in 1911, which incorporated an electric arc as a production heat source, as an alternative to the oxygen fuel. And voila - the birth of the technology of thermal spraying.

Over the years Dr Schoop continued to develop the thermal spraying process and was honoured in 1917 by the John Scott Award. Set up in 1834, the John Scott Award honours the ‘most deserving’ inventors of the time. Dr Schoop won the award for his Metal Spraying Process.