Tag Archive for aerospace plating

Why Choose Electroplating?

copper-electroplating-nitecElectroplating is a modern form of metal finishing.  It is commonly used in the automotive, aerospace, medical, army and electrical industries.  It occurs by means of an electrochemical process when metal ions in an electrolyte solution bond to a metal substrate through electrodeposition.   The required metal component is suspended in solution, whereby a direct power supply provides a direct flow of current to the said metal component in the chemical bath.  This current provokes the ions in the solution to attract to the surface of the metallic part, resulting in a metal coating which covers the base metal thoroughly.

Electroplating Benefits

Electroplating is mainly done in order to enhance the performance and longevity of the component part in question.  Certain characteristics can be added to the part in order to create specific needs for the manufacturers.  These can include areas such as:

  • Lower friction through greater lubrication
  • Better wear, abrasion and corrosion resistance
  • Temperature and impact resistance
  • Improved conductivity
  • Improved solderability
  • Porosity reducing
  • Creating added strength and hardness to the component
  • Creating a thicker appearance to smaller or undersized components
  • Increased protection for EMI and RFI shielding

Common Plating

Plating facilities match base metals with a wide array of coating surface metal finishes.  The most commonly used in this field are copper, brass, nickel, steel and bronze.  In order to decide which surface metal is used to coat for the finish, the components uses are highly considered so that the manufacturer can get the highest performance and longest lasting component part electroplated.

As examples:

Gold plating is the perfect solution for electrical conductivity, heat protection and corrosion and can survive in a multitude of environments and temperatures.

Silver plating is commonly used in the electrical industry dues to its low electrical resistance.

Nickel plating is ideal for the chemical industry.  It protects against chemicals and is corrosion and wear resistant.

Copper plating is most commonly used in the automotive industry.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it electroless nickel plating or copper plating or heat treatment which may require specialist assistance, then get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Whisky Sipping in Space Thanks to Plating

Gold-plating-aerospace-plating-NiTECDue to inspirational Physics developments, it is now possible for astronauts to drink Whisky in Space.  The activity of visiting to space may be a dangerous one but at the end of each day, the astronauts can rest easy when they are assured that they can have a ‘real’ drink, which isn’t out of a plastic bag.  Apparently, this is one of the most common complaints from the International Space Station (ISS) crews that they miss their familiar Earth-like environment back home.

Plating in the Solution to the Problem

On hearing this, Ballatine’s therefore addressed this by commissioning an Open Space Agency team, led by James Parr, in order to create an innovative, microgravity glass which would enable the astronauts in question to enjoy a glass of whisky, just as they would with their feet on the Earth.  Ballatine’s Space Glass looks like a regular whisky glass but has special, particular features allowing liquid to enter the glass, stay in the glass and which allow sipping.

It has been studied for over a year as to how whisky behaves in a zero gravity environment by building a series of prototype glasses to test their theories.  The final result is something that somewhat resembles a Don Draper balloon glass but which is made out of 3D printed plastic and has a weighted rose-gold plated spiral convex base which sits perfectly in the holders hand.  Its weight comes from the 10kg pull magnet, giving the glass some inertia, anchoring it to the table when in zero gravity.  The base also contains a clever, one-way valve to fill the glass using a standard Ballantine’s whisky bottle, in order to stop the whisky from spilling.

Gold Plated Glasses

The reason as to why the Space Glass has been gold plated was partly due to the aesthetics with the gold plating matching the plating used on the astronauts’ sun visors on their spacesuits.  But the gold plating was also used because it is one of the very few metals which does not affect the taste of the whisky when in Space.

How does Gold Plating help drinking in Space?

When liquids are in Space, they tend to turn in to a sticky jelly, so to counteract this from happening with the whisky, a spiral in the glass creates surface tension which holds it down.  The side of the glass contains a helix with a small channel concealed inside it which picks up the whisky in a capillary action, pulling it up to a gold plated mouthpiece on the rim of the glass.  Why a gold plated mouth piece you may well ask?  This is for multiple reasons – Firstly, so that the astronaut can physically see where their lips are meant to be placed so that they are over the concealed channel exit point and they know where to put their lips.  Secondly, the gold cools the alcohol as it passes through the mouthpiece.  Thirdly, gold plating and not metal plating of any other kind, means that there is no nasty after taste left in the mouth of the drinker and the texture of drinking out of what (at the end of the day) is a plastic beaker, is concealed.

NiTEC UK and You

If you or your business are interested in plating, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel platingheat treatment or have a special project requiring specialist assistance, then why not contact NiTEC UK today?  We are Derbyshire based, leading specialists in the plating industry, offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are not only high-end but are also cost effective.  We have experience of working for the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries and offer our services to the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

UK Aircraft Engine Blade Casting Facility Opened by Rolls-Royce

aircraft blade engine crafting facilityAs experts in metal finishes and plating techniques used in the aerospace industry, we were delighted to read the news about the new £110 million advanced blade casting facility which has been opened nearby in Rotherham. Rolls-Royce have opened the 50,000ft² facility, which is expected to produce more than 100,000 single crystal turbine blades a year, including high pressure (HP) and intermediate pressure (IP) single crystal blades.

New Technology and Modern Manufacturing Processes

Rolls-Royce plan to open the facility in 2017, and it is estimated to bring 150 new jobs into the region. Matthew Hancock, who is the UK Minister of State at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said: “This new facility will house the most advanced blade casting facility in the world, and is a truly remarkable feat of engineering. Our aerospace growth partnership has put in place a long-term industrial strategy for the whole aerospace industry, and this investment by Rolls-Royce in new technology and modern manufacturing processes is testament to the ongoing strength of this sector.”

The facility will make use of the manufacturing methods that have already been developed within Rolls-Royce and at the Coventry based Manufacturing Centre. The facility will include automated manufacturing techniques, including integrated wax fabrication lines, 3D structured light inspection and computed tomography (CT).

Turbine Blades for Trent, Rolls-Royce and Airbus

The new plant will produce turbine blades which will be used in various Trent aero engines, Rolls-Royce Trent XWB, which will power Airbus A350 XWB. Each Trent XWB engine requires 182 HP and IP turbine blades, which are 10cm in height and 300g in weight, and undergo 200 processes before being installed. The blades operate at temperatures of up to 200°, and are placed in a disc that rotates at over 12,000rpm. The turbine extracts energy from the engine’s combustor hot gas stream, and uses it to drive the fan and compressors.

UK Based Metal Plating Services

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services. Our high quality electroless nickel plating service is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive andaerospace industries. For more information, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk