Electroless Nickel on Tungsten


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Q. Can one apply electroless nickel over a tungsten metal matrix? S.T.

A. There are a couple of different procedures for doing this that are found in the plating literature. One such procedure is outlined in the book Electroless Plating – Fundamentals and Applications (1990), edited by Glenn O. Mallory and Juan B. Hadju.

The general procedure is as follows:

  1. Alkaline potassium ferrocyanide soak, 215 g/L in 75 g/L potassium hydroxide, room temperature, for one min.
  2. Rinse.
  3. Boil in 10 percent potassium hydroxide for 10 min.
  4. Rinse.
  5. Dip in 10 percent hydrochloric acid for 30 sec.
  6. Rinse.
  7. Activate with palladium chloride (0.1–0.5 g/L in 1–3 mL/L hydrochloric acid).*
  8. Rinse.
  9. Electroless nickel plate.

*A Wood’s nickel strike may be substituted in some cases.