Electroless Nickel Plating
Electroless nickel, EN, plating utilizes a chemical reaction to deposit a nickel phosphorous alloy onto a variety of substrates. This is a different process than electrolytic plating in that it is an autocatalytic reaction. Deposition occurs in electroless nickel chemical baths which contain a solution of metal ions, chelates, reducing and complexing agents, and stabilizers. Since the process is a chemical reaction, the resulting thickness and coverage of the part is more easily controlled, as long as the surface is sufficiently prepared to allow for the EN adhesion. “Electroless nickel is preferred for irregularly shaped parts when a uniform thickness is required (NASA-STD-6012).” In addition, EN is capable of deposing uniformly on internal and external configurations regardless of the complexity of the shape.
The electroless nickel baths used at Electro-spec vary based on the amount of phosphorus in the deposit. The concentration of phosphorus can determine the mechanical, thermal and electrical properties of the plated deposit. Below is a table which summarizes some of the key properties of the electroless nickel plating solutions offered at Electro-Spec;