What are the advantages of electroless nickel plating?


What is it?

Electroless nickel plating is an extremely versatile surface-finishing process with a host of benefits across various industries. Compared to traditional electroplating which uses an external electrical current, it’s also a more efficient (and often more cost-effective) method for many applications.

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The benefits

Corrosion resistance: One of the main benefits of electroless nickel plating is its remarkable resistance to corrosion. This boosts the lifespan of any components that are routinely exposed to harsh environments, like those used in the automotive or aerospace industry, for example.

Wear resistance: Coatings provide outstanding wear and abrasion resistance, perfect for components subjected to friction, like gears, moulds and machinery parts, ensuring prolonged service life.

Ductility and lubricity: Electroless nickel coatings offer good ductility and lubricity. In other words, friction and wear are reduced in components with moving parts, ensuring smooth operation.

High hardness: When heat-treated, coatings achieve high levels of hardness, making them a welcome option for applications like cutting tools and bearings, ensuring they’re extra-resistant to wear.

Uniform coating thickness: Electroless nickel plating provides a uniform coating thickness, even on complex recesses and corners, making it suitable for intricate components.

Solderability: Electroless nickel coatings readily accept solder, which is vital for electronic applications where soldered connections are common.

Versatility: Use with a wide range of substrates. Metals like steel, aluminium and copper can be treated, as well as non-metallic materials like plastics and ceramics. Focussing on proper surface preparation is the key to achieving a strong adhesion on a range of different materials.

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For more on the properties of nickel, see here. And for those interested in applications with nickel composites, specialists such as www.poeton.co.uk/advanced-treatments/apticote-460-nickel-composites offer a range of solutions.

Improve the performance and extend the lifespan of key components by opting for electroless nickel plating. It’s a tried-and-tested treatment method that really stands out and makes an ideal option for applications across a huge range of industries. Thanks to its remarkable ability to resist corrosion and slow down wear and tear, choosing electroless nickel plating can even help you make savings over time.

Written by suNCh8

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