Industry Knowledge

Why is platinum plated anode instead of lead and lead alloy anodes?
Jun 23, 2017

       Lead is under a watchful eye across the globe. while Platinum is a chemical element with symbol Pt and atomic number 78. It is a dense, malleable, ductile, highly unreactive, precious, gray-white transition metal. Platinum have an extraordinary physical and chemical properties, such as thermal conductivity, high corrosion resistance, and catalytic nature.

        Compared to the traditional lead anode, there are the following disadvantages: lead is also built on the anode. If the power is interrupted, the lead chromium slag can be formed on the anode and will break when the power is restored. Lead Chromate Sludge poses a health hazard. Dealing with it is time-consuming and expensive. And anyone who uses lead anodes in the United States must register on the federal environmental protection agency's list of toxic chemicals. If an electroplating company can handle only about 29 kg of lead a year, it will still need to be registered.

       Platinised titanium anodes offer the following advantages over conventional lead anodes:-

•Increased throughput with reduced plating times

•Reduction or elimination of secondary processes, such as grinding

•Anode geometry remains constant over time, allowing consistent optimised plating results

•Long operating life, very low maintenance

•Increased bath life

       This is why platinum plated titanium anodes have been used in fluorine free hard chromium plating solutions, increasing the substitution of common lead and lead alloy anodes,Titanium anodes activated with platinum or platinum metal oxides have been used as insoluble anodes in electroplating for many years.

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        The change from lead anodes to platinised titanium anodes was promoted by the introduction of high efficiency fluoride free baths, which attacked lead anodes more severely than traditional hard chrome plating chemistries. Initially lead rod anodes were replaced with titanium rod anodes, which had a copper or aluminium core for high current applications, and over time further advantages of Platinized Titanium Electrode have been recognised.

       In order to utilise platinum’s exceptional conductive properties and corrosion resistance yet still remain economical, anodes are created by electroplating a very thin layer (typically 2-5-m) of platinum onto a specially treated activated substrate such as titanium or niobium. Pure titanium is often the first choice of substrate as it provides excellent corrosion resistance in many environments, including oxidizing acids and chlorides.

        When your electroplating industry needs anode, I believe you will choose the titanium anode according to the actual situation

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