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Metal Plating for Aluminum

Metal plating enhances the technical surface characteristics of aluminum products and components, improving corrosion resistance, lubricity and solderability.

Electroless Nickel plating does not rely on electrical current to apply a thin coat of nickel to aluminum surfaces. Instead, this process uses an autocatalytic chemical reaction between hypophosphite and nickel salt solutions in solution.

Nye-Kote high phosphorus electroless nickel plating offers exceptional corrosion resistance, hardness and wearability – qualities often sought out in power transmission/distribution and energy industries.


Tensile force measures how much physical impact a coating or metal can withstand before breaking apart, providing insight into its resilience.

This form of nickel plating does not rely on electric current to complete its process; rather, it uses an autocatalytic chemical reduction mechanism. Substrates are submerged in an aqueous solution consisting of nickel ions and sodium hypophosphite as the reducing agent; the percentage of phosphorus present will determine both hardness and corrosion resistance properties in the final product.

Electroless nickel offers superior abrasion and wear resistance, protecting parts from friction, shock, and other impacts. Furthermore, its hardness can be increased using high temperatures baking. Furthermore, its amorphous nature helps inhibit microcrystalline growth for increased corrosion resistance – an attractive alternative to more hazardous lead and cadmium systems used in many applications.

Corrosion Resistance

Hi-Tech specializes in medium phosphorous electroless nickel plating (Nye-Kote), providing superior corrosion protection for aluminum alloys with high copper and silicon contents that tend to gall when sliding against each other. As its deposits are formed through chemical reactions instead of electric current, uniformity across substrate geometry remains maintained compared with anodizing.

Aluminum is an extremely reactive metal, quickly oxidizing upon being exposed to air. Unfortunately, this layer cannot be reduced electrolytically and must be removed prior to plating aluminum with nickel plating – offering corrosion resistance, lubricity, uniform coating coverage and uniform corrosion protection from aggressive environments such as seawater, industrial pollutants or any other corrosion-inducing agents.


ENEPIG (Electroless Nickel/Electroless Palladium/Immersion Gold) technology has quickly gained prominence due to its ability to provide both solderable surfaces and gold wire bondable IC pads with excellent corrosion resistance properties.

Nickel plating aluminum involves using an alkaline solution to wash away contaminants from an aluminum substrate and coat it with a thin layer of zinc – this process is known as “zincating.” Once applied, this zinc layer can either be electroless nickel plated like with aluminum alloy plating or electroless nickel plated for enhanced corrosion protection with Nye-Kote high phosphorus corrosion protective coatings.

Copper is the second-most-popular metal used in electroless nickel plating and offers similar advantages as nickel in terms of corrosion resistance and wear resistance, enhanced aesthetic appeal, excellent electrical conductivity and antibacterial protection. Gold provides even greater corrosion protection by increasing corrosion resistance, limiting rust and increasing usability while offering antibacterial benefits that make parts even longer-lived than usual.


Aluminum parts can become vulnerable to galling when in contact, particularly during sliding. Anodising will not suffice; manufacturers should choose from among various metal deposits such as gold, silver plating services, tin, copper, zinc chrome cadmium or palladium when creating their coatings.

Nickel is more effective. Being a noble metal, it is less susceptible to being attacked by saltwater solutions and industrial pollutants than aluminium it covers, providing additional corrosion protection by immobilizing it at its source and keeping corrosion localized at its point of initiation rather than spreading across their joint interfaces.

Nickel plating offers excellent electrical conductivity, making it an invaluable coating option for power transmission/distribution and energy sectors. Furthermore, nickel plating features excellent solderability properties and is the go-to choice for inside diameter (ID) applications on complex shaped and threaded parts. In addition, its highly uniform deposit yields thickness tolerances below 5% using Fischerscope X-Ray analysis.

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