5 Electroplating Technology Developments

5 Electroplating Technology Developments

The metal plating industry is constantly evolving and as time moves forward, there will be several new developments in electroplating technology. These new processes and resources will help the metal plating industry grow and prosper for years to come. So what are some of these new electroplating technologies? We have compiled a list of five major developments predicted to emerge in the near future.

1. “Green” Process Chemistries

Governmental regulation and consumer demand has and will continue to influence the development of greener chemistry, which will hopefully limit or eliminate most hazardous substances from being used in the electroplating process. Keep in mind, this process will not occur overnight because chemical companies will have to put a lot of research into creating effective, affordable chemicals. In addition, due to technical restrictions, some hazardous processes may have to continue for some time until new solutions are found.

2. Greater Use of “Dry” Processes

Over the years, the electroplating industry as seen a transition from “wet” surface finishing to “dry” finishing. This new process has helped to reduce operator exposure, hazardous emissions, dangerous chemicals, and overall waste generation. In the future, there should be an even greater push to use the “dry” process.

3. Use of Non-Metal Substrates

For those who may not be familiar with the term substrate, it is typically a metal which is plated with another metal that has different physical properties. However, in the future, there will be more substrates of non-metal construction. These composites are generally non-metallic and contain some type of reinforcement such as glass, carbon, or Kevlar. These new substrates are stronger, more durable, and more resistant to corrosion than metallic surfaces. Plastics will also see greater use due to the material’s light weight and corrosion resistance.

4. Development of New Metals

Today and into the near future, companies have started developing new metals which provide corrosion resistance without the need for hazardous chemical processes as a result this helps our environment. This electroplating technology will hopefully eliminate some of the current processes that are required to fortify weaker and less durable alloys.

5. Use of Nanotechnology

Nanotechnology deals with the manipulation of matter with at least one dimension sized from 1 to 100 nanometers (really small). This technology will have a major effect on the metal finishing industry as a whole. Nanocrystalline metals provide greater hardness, wear-resistance, ductility, and corrosion resistance compared to traditional metal surfaces. In addition, these materials are also lighter in weight and only require an extremely thin coating in order to provide adequate protection.

Conclusion

In general, demand and ROI Influence our evolution. In addition, these electroplating technology developments will take a few years to become established, however, they should have a major impact on the metal finishing industry as a whole.

For more information on this topic, or any other electroplating subject, feel free brows our blog or give us a call at (314) 776-0542.

References:

Chalmer, Paul D. The Future of Finishing. 01 Jan. 2008. Michigan, Ann Arbor. Web. 17 Sept. 2015.