Introduction to Plating

Plating is a finishing process that deposits metal onto a conductive surface to achieve decorative, resistance, solderability, wearability, strengthening, friction reduction, adhesion, and various other properties. Although the plating process has been carried out throughout the ages, it is a critical process in modern technology. The discovery for its use in nanotechnology was made when the plating of objects as small as atoms occurred through thin-film deposition. In recent times, plating can often occur with the use of liquids.

There are several plating methods; among them, there are numerous variations. Electroplating supplies an ionic metal with electrons to form a non-ionic coating to a substrate. See Electroplating finishing process for more information.

Electroless plating is a chemical method that involves several simultaneous chemical reactions with the use of an aqueous solution. One of the electroless plating methods occurs when a solid surface is covered with a thin metal sheet, which subsequently undergoes an application of heat and pressure to fuse them.

There are many specific materials used in plating, for example, alloy, cadmium, chrome, composite, gold, nickel, rhodium, silver, tin, zinc, and zinc-nickel. Jewelry typically uses plating to give a silver or gold finish. Metallizing refers to coating metal on non-metallic objects.


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