The latest issue of Product Finishing Magazine has a great summary article written by Ruben Prado of Navair that looks at performance of Integran's Nanovate CoP process for corrosion and wear protection of steel. This plating process is designed as a direct drop-in hard chrome replacement. It's an electroplated metal with properties that exceed that of hard chrome in many respects. Although the article focussed on some aerospace specific requirements (like fatigue resistance), there are fantasitc industrial, oil and gas and defense applications for the technology.
The presentation summarizes test results gathered by Navair as they evaluate the process which the industry hopes will replace hexavalent hard chrome plating.
Navair's interest is easy to understand. The Navy have lots of applications for both aircraft and marine vehicles where there is a high need for wear resistance coupled with a high degree of corrosion resistance.
From the article:
"Electrodeposited nanocrystalline cobalt-phosphorus (nCoP) has emerged
as a viable environmental alternative to hard chromium coatings for both
line-of-sight (LOS) and non-line-of-sight (NLOS) applications. The
coatings’ material properties revealed that nCoP has high hardness,
enhanced ductility, lower wear rates, superior corrosion resistance and no
issues with hydrogen embrittlement after baking."
it goes on to say:
"The coatings’ material properties revealed that nCoP has high hardness, enhanced
ductility, lower wear rates, superior corrosion resistance and no issues with hydrogen
embrittlement after baking. They exhibit:
■ Higher process efficiency with reduced energy consumption
■ Higher deposition rates
■ Large thicknesses deposited
■ No pitting, microcracks or pores
■ Lower environmental impact"
The process efficiency is one area where we are starting to see lots of interest. Current chrome plating is coming under greater regulatory scrutiny, making additional capacity expansion unlikely. The aerospace and defense markets, on the other hand, are growing and asking more of their supply chain. Would you rather put in another chrome line, or put through 4-5x the throughput through the same process footprint? In fact, the Nanovate CoP can be dropped into a chrome line with only minor changes to infrastructure!
If you are interested, the full article is available below AND there is also very detailed presentations at the same Nanovate CoP Download Page: