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12/1/2014

Nickel Concentration, Deposition Rate and Ductility

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In electroplating, is the deposition rate in a nickel plating solution linear?

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Q. I’m new to the world of electroplating, and currently I am trying to determine if the deposition rate in a nickel plating solution is linear with the concentration of the plating solution. Also how is the ductility affected by the increased concentration of nickel in the nickel plating bath? —S.H.

A. Electroplating, sadly, is not as linear as you would like it to be. There are somewhat linear relationships between concentration and deposition rate, but only in a small range. You will find that the relationship between deposit thickness and time tends to be linear in the "normal" range that most everyday plating is done. In the case of ductility, it is affected by grain size with larger grains giving better ductility. Warmer plating solutions, lower current densities and higher metal concentrations tend to give larger grain sizes.

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