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PLATING ON TITANIUM

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 Q. I am looking for a good procedure for plating copper on commercially pure titanium. We have tried a number of different methods for doing this but without any success. T.H.

 

A. As you have found out, plating on titanium is not the easiest process out there. The first thing you have to do is remove oxides from the surface. The oxides formed by titanium are rather tenacious and require more than the standard cleaning procedures. After plating is completed a baking step is often required to improve the adhesion of the plated layer.
A number of different procedures are available for doing this. One such procedure involves the following steps. Also note that the procedure requires the use of some nasty materials. Extreme caution is recommended when following this procedure.

Process Step

Comments

Solvent degrease  
Alkaline clean

190–195°F, 1–5 min

Rinse thoroughly in deionized water  
Blast with water abrasive slurry

100–1200 mesh

Rinse thoroughly in deionized water  
Plate with electroless nickel10 micron thickness
Rinse rapidly with deionized water  
Plate in an acid copper plating bath  
Rinse thoroughly in deionized water  
Heat treat for 1 hr in a reducing atmosphere 

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