Progressive Ebara Products
Processes Applications / Features
CU-BRITE 21 PROCESS

Bright acid copper plating process for PWBs. Excellent throwing power. Film has good ductility and excellent thermal shock resistance.

ECOLTY TEF
EN-PTFE composite eco-friendly coating process. Does not contain ‘lead’ or ‘Bismuth’. No use of fluoride surfactants (PFOS related substances). Plating film has excellent abrasion resistance, low friction co-efficient and good hardness.
ECOLTY CORE
High corrosion resistance eco-friendly electroless nickel process. Does not contain ‘lead’ or Bismuth. Stable bath. High phosphor bath which gives good corrosion resistance. Good resistance to discoloration.
 
Standard Plating Cycle* for ABS and PC/ABS
* Subject to change according to the type of material and molding conditions.
Conditioning
500C- 10 min
Improves wettability in the etching process.
(Pre-etching)
400C- As apt
Accelerates etching effect for the special PC/ABS resin.
Etching
680C - 8 min
Roughens the resin surface. Forms polarity radicals that let Pd-Sn colloids adsorb.
Neutralization
250C - 3 min
Accelerates seepage of chromic acid remaining in rack contacts.
(Special neutralization)
250C - 3 min
Accelerates the adsorption of Pd-Sn colloids on the special PC/ABS resin.
Pre-catalysis
250C - 1 min

Prevents water from directly dragged into the catalyzing bath and suppresses hydrolysis of colloids.

Catalysis
350C -3 min
Adsorbs palladium that later becomes the nuclei of catalyser as Pd-Sn colloids.
Acceleration
350C -3 min
Dissolves excessive Sn in the colloids adsorbed and activates the palladium.
Electroless nickel plating
350C -7 min
Forms a thin nickel film on the resin surface and gives conductivity.
Activation
250C -1 min
Activates the electrolessly plated nickel film.
Nickel strike
500C -5 min
Prevents burning at the rack contacts and improves adhesion.
Conditioning
350C -1 min
Prevents displacement of an excessive quantity of copper in the acid copper plating process.
Bright acid copper plating
250C - 3 A/dm2
Provides a buffer between the resin substrate and the nickel film electroplated later in terms of physical properties.
Activation
250C -30 min
Improves adhesion between the acid copper and nickel films.
Semi-bright nickel plating
550C - 3 A/dm2
Forms a nickel film with an excellent appearance, corrosion resistance, and physical properties.
Bright nickel plating
550C - 3 A/dm2
Forms a nickel film with an excellent mirror bright appearance and corrosion resistance.
MP nickel plating
550C - 3 A/dm2
Co-deposits numerous fine particles for the formation of micropores in the chrome film formed in the later stage.
Diluted chromic acid dip
250C - As apt
Conditions the nickel film surface to improve the covering power of the bright chrome film to be plated in the next stage.
Bright chrome plating
420C - 15 A/dm2
Final plating process that improves the metallic appearance and corrosion resistance.
Drying
 
Manners of Use & Control of Main Processes
Etching: Hi chromic acid bath
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
Chromic acid (g/L) 400 360–420 Chemical analysis
Sulfuric acid (g/L) 400 360–420 Chemical analysis
Trivalent chromium (g/L) 010–020 Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 68 065–070  
Treatment time (min) 8 005–015  
       
The most important process that gives the greatest impact on the basic performance of plated resin products. The conditions vary according to the type of material and molding conditions. Accumulation of trivalent chromium causes unevenness in etching in minute areas and skips, so it should be suppressed with an electrolytic oxidation system, etc. Certain types of resin may require pre-etching in a solvent-based solution.
* Optimum for bath make-up.
 
Neutralization: ENILEX RD
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
ENILEX RD (mL/L) 10 005–020 Chemical analysis
Hydrochloric acid (mL/L) 60 010–070 Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 25 020–030  
Treatment time (min) 3 002–004  
       
The conditions for control like additive concentrations should be changed/set according to the deposition conditions such as skips on workpieces and deposition on racks.
 
Special neutralization: ENILEX NW
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
ENILEX NW (mL/L) 10 001–020  
Hydrochloric acid (mL/L) 30 010–050 Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 25 020–030  
Treatment time (min) 3 002–003  
       
Accelerates adsorption of Pd-Sn colloids on the surface of special resin like PC/ABS on which nickel is not easily deposited electrolessly. On the other hand, nickel is easily deposited on the coating of racks and therefore due attention is required to control the operating conditions properly.
 
Catalysis: ENILEX CT-580
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
ENILEX CT-580 (mL/L) 20 010–050  
Hydrochloric acid (mL/L) 200 150–350 Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 35 030–038  
Treatment time (min) 3 002–005  
       
For a drop of the solution surface, add diluted hydrochloric acid by 30 to 50 mL/L to raise it. Directly adding water may risk decomposition of the colloids. The tin concentration should also be controlled carefully. For suspension of the operation for a long time, it is essential to circulate the solution with the pump.
 
Electroless nickel plating: ENILEX NI-100
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
ENILEX      
NI-100 AM: Make-up (mL/L) 160  
NI-100 BM: Make-up (mL/L) 160  
NI-100 A: Supply
Ni metal (g/L)
04.5–6.5 Chemical analysis
NI-100 B: Supply
NaH2PO2 (g/L)
12–25 Chemical analysis
Ammonia solution (pH) 9.5 8.5–9.5 pH measurement
Sodium phosphite (g/L) 100
or less
Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 35 30–45  
Treatment time (min) 7 05–10  
       
The pH of the solution should be 9.5 upon make-up and between 8.8 and 9.0 during the operation. Sodium phosphite accumulates by the operation and subsequently gives adverse effects such as drop in reactivity and increase in phosphorus content of the plated film. Therefore, it is essential to keep the sodium phosphite concentration below a certain level by bailing a portion of the bath out and replenish it with a new solution.
 
Conditioning: PDC
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
PDC (mL/L) 10 5–20 Chemical analysis
Sulfuric acid (mL/L) 30 20–40 Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 35 25–40  
Treatment time (min) 3 0.5–2  
       
An important process, as well as the nickel strike, in obtaining good appearance for large workpieces. Due attention should be given to the electrolessly plated nickel film for its condition affects the condition of displacement deposition of copper. The solution should be renewed regularly.
 
Acid copper plating: CU-BRITE EP-30
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
CU-BRITE EP-30 A (mL/L) 0.1 0.8–1.4 Hull cell test
CU-BRITE EP-30 B (mL/L) 0.3 0.2–0.5 Hull cell test
CU-BRITE EP-30 C (mL/L) 4.0 3.0–5.0 Hull cell test
Cl- (mg/L) 80 60–100 Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 25 20–35  
Current density (A/dm2) 3 2.0–4.0  
Treatment time (min) As fit **  
       
Not only proper concentration control of the additives and basic composition but also use of appropriate types of anodes, anode bags, and the cloth & cartridge for the filter are important. Unsuitable agitation system may cause pits and unevenness in appearance. The bath temperature may affect not only the appearance but also the running cost of the additives.
 
Semi-bright nickel plating: CF-24T
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
CF-24 T (mL/L) 1.0 0.8–1.2 Hull cell test
CF-N II A (mL/L) 1.0 0.8–1.2 Hull cell test
#82 (mL/L) 1.0 1.0–2.0 Surface tension test
Bath temperature (0C) 55 50–60  
Current density (A/dm2) 3 2.0–4.0  
Treatment time (min) As fit **  
       
Not only proper concentration control of the additives and basic composition but also use of appropriate types of anodes, anode bags, and the cloth & cartridge for the filter are important. Unsuitable agitation system may cause pits and unevenness in appearance. Purification of the plating solution is most important in obtaining and maintaining excellent corrosion resistance and physical properties.
 
Bright nickel plating: #77
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
#733 (mL/L) 15 010–20 Spectrophoto-
meter
AJ-4 (mL/L) 2.0 2.4–4.0 Chemical analysis
#711 A (mL/L) 1.0 2.0–5.0 Hull cell test
#82 (mL/L) 1.0 1.0–2.0 Surface tension test
Bath temperature (0C) 55 50–60  
Current density (A/dm2) 3 2.0–4.0  
Treatment time (min) As fit **  
       
Not only proper concentration control of the additives and basic composition but also use of appropriate types of anodes, anode bags, and the cloth & cartridge for the filter are important. Unsuitable agitation system may cause pits and unevenness in appearance. Purification of the plating solution is most important in obtaining and maintaining excellent corrosion resistance and physical properties. A recovery (water rinse) tank must be installed after this plating bath to prevent the following MP-Ni bath from being contaminated.
 
Microporous nickel plating: MP-NI308
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
MP-333 (mL/L) 10 010–20 Spectrophoto-
meter
MP-311 (mL/L) 2.0 2.4–4.0 Hull cell test
MP-366 (mL/L) 0.7 2.0–5.0 Hull cell test
MP POWDER 308 (mL/L) 3.0 1.0–2.0 Quant. determination/
Hull cell test
MP-308 B (mL/L) 3.0   Hull cell test
Bath temperature (0C) 55 50–60  
Current density (A/dm2) 3 2.0–4.0  
Treatment time (min) 2–3    
       
To ensure high corrosion resistance of workpieces, the number of micropores in and the potential & thickness of the nickel film are very important factors. Appropriate potential difference between multilayared nickel films (SB-Ni, B-Ni, and MP-Ni) and their thickness must also be ensured. Further, proper control of additive concentrations, temperature, pH, current density, and plating time is essential as well as purification of the plating solution (by regular transfer purification and renewal).
Note: Never get the recovered solution back to the MP-Ni bath.
 
Bright chromium plating: E-40
Item Opt.* Range Control
Remarks
ECR-40 (g/L) 4.0 3.0–5.0 Analysis, Hull cell test
As F- conc. (ppm) 600 400–800 Chemical analysis
Bath temperature (0C) 42 40–50  
Current density (A/dm2) 15 20–20  
Treatment time (min) As fit **  
       
An important process in view of the appearance and corrosion resistance of workpieces. To ensure appropriate film thickness and covering power, proper control of the basic composition, fluorine ion concentration, bath temperature, anodes and shield plates is essential.
** According to the film thickness required.
 
Plating on Plastics System with High Corrosion Resistance
The plating on plastics system has been used widely for some time now for both external and internal automotive parts in view of reduction in weight, convenience of molding, and good productivity. Not only good aesthetic quality but also high corrosion resistance for a long time under harsh conditions are required for the system.
 
Electroplating on Plastics with High Corrosion Resistance for High-end Automotive Parts
 
New Microporous Chrome Plating Process
Significantly Improved Corrosion Resistance  
The plating on plastics system has been used widely for some time now for both external and internal automotive parts in view of reduction in weight, convenience of molding, and good productivity. Not only good aesthetic quality but also high corrosion resistance for a long time under harsh conditions are required for the system.
Examples of potential difference in multi-layered nickel films
 
Example 1: When the potential of MP-Ni film is higher than that of bright Ni film
 
Example 1: When the potential of MP-Ni film is lower than that of bright Ni film
 
Plating Machine for Automotive Resin Parts with New Functions
Specification
Rack size 1,700 (W) x 400 (T) x 1,450 (D) mm
Treatment rate 10 racks/hour
Depth of tank 1,850 mm
Total height 6,700 mm
Carriers 9 units (Overhead traveling type)
Features
  1. Carriers are driven with servomotors in traveling.
  2. Stockers are installed in the plating line.
  3. Sequential start-up and stop of the carriers.
  4. Automatic selection of the etching process to meet the material type.
  5. Current setting to meet the surface area of substrate.
  6. Data display with touch panels.