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Who we are

The HEF Groupe is a world leader in surface engineering, capable of proposing to its customers, large accounts or SMBs, a total service ranging from research, through industrial development and technology transfer, to the utilization of processes or the supply of components.

In order to accompany its customers as well as possible in their approaches and create genuine partnerships, the HEF Group relies on the strength and complementarity of its commercial network, HEF Durferrit, and of its custom treatment network, Techniques Surfaces, located in more than about twenty countries.

HEF's key expertise is in:

Tribology and functionalization of surfaces

Thermochemical treatments and, in particular, controlled liquid ionic nitriding treatments (CLIN®).

PVD - PACVD vacuum deposition, such as DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) and the other mechanical and tribological layers.

Friction rings and components

The great variety of its processes today enables the HEF Group to be involved in the functionality of surfaces, thus opening up new prospects. The HEF Group thus continues to develop, as witnessed by its numerous research contracts and partnerships, surface engineering constituting the core business and recognized area of excellence of the HEF Group.

Our values


As its founder, Jean Jacques CAUBET, wished, HEF is mostly owned by its employees through a share incentive plan introduced in 1973. This original feature is one of the fundamental pillars on which the Group rests. It has made it possible to construct its development in a lasting manner and leads to involvement of its employees in strategic decisions. Its independence is ensured and this capitalist structure guarantees the Group financial autonomy enabling it to continuously invest in Research and Development so as to be at the forefront of innovation in order to meet its customers' requirements.


Research and development is historically the HEF Group's activity. From tribology research and consultancy for its own requirements and for outside customers, HEF extended its research activity to surface engineering.HEF is multiplying national and international partnerships so as to add to its portfolio of technologies and its research resources.
HEF supports changes in society and is investing in:

Reduction of polluting emissions

New energies

New surface functions


In as high-tech an area as surface engineering, it quickly became necessary for HEF to make itself known outside France so as to permit the expansion of its most innovative solutions and to put them within everyone's reach. In addition, this early and controlled worldwide development enables the HEF Group to make its considerable Research & Development efforts profitable and always to keep itself at the forefront in the resolution of tribology problems. Today, the Group is present in about twenty countries and can guarantee large accounts that the same technologies and the same levels of quality as those proposed in France or in Germany are available in its Chinese, Polish, Brazilian, American, etc. units.


For several years now, the HEF Group has made the current environmental challenges a priority, devoting 50% of its research budget to environmental themes. By improving surface friction, tribology makes it possible to reduce CO2 emissions by reducing fuel consumption in cars and aircraft, etc. Photovoltaic energy, thermal solar energy, hydrogen cells, water treatment, etc. are subjects which HEF tackles and for which the Group wishes to provide answers, thus participating in sustainable development. Finally, HEF proposes numerous innovative and clean substitute treatments for electrolytic treatments using heavy metals and the implementation of which creates pollution (replacement of hard chromium, nickel cadmium, etc.).