Plating

Electroless Nickel Plating
Electroless Nickel Plating
Electroless Nickel Plating
Electroless Nickel Plating

Electroless Nickel Plating

Electroless nickel plating, also known as enickel and NiP, offers many advantages - uniform layer thickness over most complicated surfaces - direct plating of ferrous metals (steel)and superior wear and corrosion resistance to electroplated nickel or chrome. Much of the chrome plating done in aerospace industry can be replaced with electroless nickel plating, again environmental costs, costs of hexavalent chromium waste disposal and notorious tendency of uneven current distribution favour electroless nickel plating. Electroless nickel plating is self-catalyzing process, the resultant nickel layer is NiP compound, with 7–11% phosphorus content. Properties of the resultant layer hardness and wear resistance are greatly altered with bath composition and deposition temperature, which should be regulated with 1 °C precision, typically at 91 °C. During bath circulation, any particles in it will become also nickel plated, this effect is used to advantage in processes which deposit plating with particles like silicon carbide (SiC) or polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). While superior compared to many other plating processes, it is expensive because the process is complex. Moreover, the process is lengthy even for thin layers. When only corrosion resistance or surface treatment is of concern, very strict bath composition and temperature control is not required and the process is used for plating many tons in one bath at once. Electroless nickel plating layers are known to provide extreme surface adhesion when plated properly. Electroless nickel plating is non-magnetic and amorphous. Electroless nickel plating layers are not easily solderable, nor do they seize with other metals or another electroless nickel plated workpiece under pressure. This effect benefits electroless nickel plated screws made out of malleable materials like titanium. Electrical resistance is higher compared to pure metal plating.

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