The mission: “To reveal the invisible in the workflow”

Teratonics offers innovative solutions for contactless non-destructive testing and imaging inside materials like plastics or composites and on coated surfaces. The non-hazardous technology reveals invisible, structural defects and can simultaneously control the dimensions in a very fast way – in production cycle time. 

“This immediate insight into produced parts is a game changer for industrial quality and process control. It’s part of the answer to the economic and ecological challenges that we face nowadays,” says co-founder and CEO, Uli Schmidhammer. “Defective parts and non-optimized fabrication processes cost time and money, they waste raw materials and energy.”

The problem we’re addressing 

Advanced materials and processes are increasingly being introduced in manufacturing, often to help lightweight transport with reduced CO2 footprint and make designs more sustainable. 

With greater manufacturing complexity, however, comes an increase in the probability of defects. At the same time, stringent governmental regulations and companies’ own standards demand to keep defects to a minimum. 

“The later a defect or dimensional deviation is discovered, the more expensive it becomes.” says Schmidhammer. “The latest recalls of 100 thousand of vehicles from established car manufactures just illustrate the visible top of the iceberg of the poor-quality cost, An immediate control of the internal structure equals reduce the cost of producing defective parts that represents an average 5% of the revenues of a company and even up to 20% of plastics industries.”

What we do 

Teratonics enables such immediate insights, also into large objects, with an innovative approach of Non-Destructive Testing. The technology uses the last part of the electromagnetic spectrum to be industrially exploited. 

“The terahertz frequency range allows contactless and harmless analysis inside dielectric materials and on hidden metallic surfaces,” says Xavier Neiers, CTO of Teratonics.

 “Our internationally patented approach is a breakthrough in speed and stability for pulsed terahertz. As a result, depth resolved imaging of internal structures becomes possible in the production cycle time of many industries. For many applications, this inline imaging capacity is a unique feature in the NDT market at large.”

Our history 

Teratonics was created 2017 by Xavier Neiers and Uli Schmidhammer to reply to the industrial need of quality control in the workflow that can trigger automated reactions and to reduce in this way the costs of poor and good quality. The company leverages 10 years of academic research at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Université Paris-Saclay and CNRS.

Interesting fact about Teratonics

As it often occurs for breakthrough innovation, Teratonics’ disruption to the THz sector was brought from outside the field. “I was working as a researcher on a project for fundamental science, on the diagnostic for a particle accelerator.” Uli remembers. “We found a very effective detector and we quickly saw its potential value for the emerging THz sector. 

“A valorisation project was started by the research institute, including business development. Stimulated by the positive industrial feedback we received, we took the decision to create a company.”

What we hope from Sixth Sense 

“The Sixth Sense program is a great opportunity for us to collaborate with the industrial metrology market leader and a key driver of the Industry 4.0 revolution,” says Uli. “We want to capitalise on Hexagon’s reach into different markets to promote our game-changing offer that can reveal the invisible, inline and with high freedom of operation. 

“We would like to exchange on users’ needs in different sectors to trigger and accelerate the release of new products and services based on the synergies between Hexagon and our offerings. In collaboration with Hexagon, we want to shape the future of immediate quality control and metrology, including for internal structures.