| NASF Education Director
Industrial & Precious Metals Plating
The course consists of 10 lessons. Students successfully completing the exam will be given credit towards the AESF Master Surface Finishers (MSF) certification. While it is not necessary to take any AESF course to be eligible to sit for the respective exam that could lead you to becoming a Master Surface Finisher (MSF), this course covers one of the optional subject areas for qualifying to obtain MSF certification.
This training program is designed to be beneficial for operators and supervisors of job shops and captive shops performing precious metals plating operations on a variety of substrates. The course can also benefit sales personnel at industry suppliers.
The goal of this course is to provide students with a broad range of information related to methods of preparing parts for precious metals plating and to understand each precious metals plating process, what can go wrong and how to solve plating problems.
At the conclusion of this course, attendees should:
- Have a basic understanding of methods of preparing a wide range of substrates for plating
- Have knowledge of reel-to-reel plating technologies that can be employed for precious metals plating
- Know the basics of the sulfamate nickel plating process which is commonly applied as an under-plate for precious metal deposits
- Know the various types of gold plating solutions and be able to distinguish features provided by them
- Know the various type of other precious metals plating processes such as palladium, palladium-nickel, silver, platinum and rhodium, their chemical make-up and operational conditions
- Know the types of tin plating processes commonly employed in the electronics industry, their chemical make-up and operational conditions
- Be prepared to take the examination, which is part of the AESF Foundation MSF certification program.
- 1. Preparing Metals for Plating, Part 1
- This lesson will provide guidance on cleaning, acid pickling and other methods of preparing substrates made of copper, zinc, “white metal” and aluminum alloys for precious metals plating.
- 2. Preparing Metals for Plating, Part 2
- This lesson will provide guidance on cleaning, acid pickling and other methods of preparing substrates made of ferrous, nickel, and other alloys for precious metals plating.
- 3. Reel-to-Reel Plating
- This lesson details the technologies employed in conducting continuous reel-to-reel plating systems. Included are discussion on the equipment, high speed plating issues and how to calculate the maximum speed a line can operate when multiple layers of plating must be applied. A special focus is made of various techniques that can be used to apply plated deposits on a selective basis.
- 4. Industrial Nickel Plating
- This lesson provides detailed guidance on the sulfamate nickel plating process, including chemical make-up, operational conditions, and impurity control. A special focus is made on the impact of impurities upon internal stress in the nickel deposit. Alloys of nickel such as tin-nickel, nickel-cobalt and nickel manganese are also covered, as are strike solution formulations and use.
- 5. Gold Plating
- This lesson covers the major gold plating processes, including cyanide, acid, and neutral formulations. Chemical make-up, equipment, operational conditions and impurity control are major topics in this lesson. A special focus is given to the subject of how to minimize porosity in gold deposits.
- 6. Decorative Gold Plating
- This lesson will provides detailed information on decorative gold plating especially for jewelry applications. A significant amount of time is devoted to the discussion of colors in gold alloy plating. Another focus of this lesson is plating gold from the sulfite process.
- 7. Silver Plating
- This lesson will provide detailed information on silver plating for jewelry and electronic applications. The lesson covers chemical make-up and operational conditions for both cyanide and non-cyanide based silver plating solutions. A significant amount of time is devoted to the discussion of carbonate generation and treatment. Another focus of this lesson is plating gold from the sulfite process.
- 8. Palladium, Palladium-Nickel, Platinum and Rhodium Plating
- Each of the titled plating processes is covered from chemical make-up to operational conditions. A special focus is a comparison of each process and deposit with the others.
- 9. Tin Plating
- This lesson covers tin plating from acidic and alkaline processes. Chemical make-up and operational conditions are the main focus of this lesson. A discussion of the causes and prevention of tin whiskers is provided along with anode filming methods for the alkaline process. A focus of this lesson is solderability issues as they relate to tin and bright tin deposits.
- 10. Alternatives to Electroplating
- Alternatives such as physical vapor deposition, HVOF Spray, Plasma Spray and Sputter Ion Plating are covered in this lesson. For each technology advantages and disadvantages are provided.