Learn more about Electroless plating, a finishing process, how do they work and what are the usages in the industry.
Electroless plating, also known as autocatalytic plating, is a purely chemical process that makes a component tougher, friction-resistant, corrosion-resistant, and aesthetically appealing. As its name suggests, electroless plating uses no electricity in the plating process compared to electroplating. It is a good alternative for industries that seek a cost-effective, simplified method for coating their parts with metal.
Parts with complex shapes requiring uniform thickness or are susceptible to heavy corrosive factors can particularly benefit from electroless plating. For example, molds and food processing machine parts are used in the foodservice industry. Also, the oil and gas, automotive, aerospace, chemical, plastics, and textiles industries are prime candidates for electroless plating.
Electroless plating is a much simpler process than electroplating. It uses a power source to deliver electricity to a component immersed in a chemical solution, altering the chemical composition and depositing a hard, durable metal coating to its surface. As with electroplating, the part must be thoroughly cleaned to remove oils and other corrosive elements before being immersed in the aqueous solution where anti-oxidation chemicals are added.
Electroless nickel plating eliminates the need for complex filtration equipment and danger due to electricity-related accidents. It is also suitable for military applications thanks to its non-reflective appearance, usually a dull silver-gray. Electroless nickel/Teflon can be applied over various substrates, including stainless steel, aluminum, copper, brass, and others.
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