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2018-09-28 - Colloque/Présentation - communication orale - Anglais - 1 page(s)

Vitry Véronique , "Electro and electroless plating in defence applications." in MET-2018 HTS-2018, Mumbai, Inde, 2018

  • Codes CREF : Chimie des surfaces et des interfaces (DI1327), Electrochimie hautes et basses températures (DI1326)
  • Unités de recherche UMONS : Métallurgie (F601)
  • Instituts UMONS : Institut de Recherche en Science et Ingénierie des Matériaux (Matériaux)
  • Centres UMONS : Ingénierie des matériaux (CRIM)

Abstract(s) :

(Anglais) Military and defence application require very high quality and durability of the machinery because the conditions in which they are used are often dire and failure is not an option. The quality of the equipment may make difference between life and death for military staff. Electro and electroless plating can be used in several ways to ensure smooth operation of equipment, due to the large range of properties that can be obtained, depending on the plated metal, the plating method and the operating conditions. The first important application of electroplating in the military is wear resistance. This can be reached in several ways. Hard chrome electroplating is one of the most popular coatings for this kind of applications but the toxicity of hexavalent chromium is leading to a progressive prohibition of its use. Recent alternatives to this method are trivalent chromium plating, electroless nickel plating (with phosphorous or boron as alloying element), tantalum alloys and cobalt-phosphorous electroplating. Electro and electroless plating is also widely used in defence electronics. In this case, military applications are not very different from civil applications: gold, copper, nickel and palladium are the most widely used metals. They can be used in monolayers (mainly in the case of gold) or in multilayers, with a copper or nickel underlayer, sometimes a diffusion barrier and a gold or palladium external layer for corrosion resistance. Corrosion resistance of defence machinery can also be increased by electro and electroless plating. In this case, the coatings can be either barrier coatings (like hard chrome, electroless nickel, electroplated nickel or gold) or sacrificial coatings (cadmium and zinc-nickel coating are the most frequent ones). Finally, the high conductivity of gold, combined with other interesting properties of this metal makes it a very good candidate for electrical contacts when high lifetime is required. Gold can also be used for reflectivity applications, mostly in the IR range or with radar. Surface finishing by electrolytic deposition of metals is thus an essential asset in military and defence applications because it allows longer, more reliable and more efficient operation of guns, aircrafts and machinery.