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Roughness in copper plating bath


We have a copper plating line (Hoop type) of CN bath the component is CuCN,KCN and some of brightener additive .I had problem about roughness after plating but it happened only 1 side of product (product is Alloy42 sheet ). Then I want to know the cause with product ? Is concern about pH and concentration of K2CO3 right or not? And how to avoid the defect?

Chookait J.
plating shop - Bangkok, Thailand


Hi Chookait. If the one side that is rough is the top side, this is called shelf roughness and is usually caused by particulates that need to be filtered out. Beyond that, I'd need to know more about this one-side defect.

Ted Mooney,
Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

October 16, 2008

Why do we get rough surface in acid copper bath?
How to overcome the above problem?
What is the operating condition?

Rajasekar Tank
employee - Coimbatore, Tamilnadu ,India

October 23, 2008

There is more than one cause for deposit roughness in acid copper plating. The most common are:
Insufficient filtration
Current density too high
Copper metal bath concentration too low
Brightener concentration too low
Metallic and / or organic bath contamination
Clogged anode bags
Your supplier should have provided you with a data sheet with operating parameters for the bath. A full analysis on the bath should be done, then dummy plate at low current density. I like to start off at 3 ASF for one hour and raise it to 5, then 7 ASF for an hour each. A carbon treatment of the bath may also be in order.

Mark Baker
Process Engineer - Syracuse, New York

October 26, 2008

Also relation copper sulphate and sulfuric acid should be considered.


Dominik Michalek
- Mexico City, Mexico

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