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Thermodynamic Properties of Sulfamate Nickel plating solution


Q. Hello!

To properly size a heating coil, I need to know the Physical & Thermodynamic properties of Sulfamate Nickel solution as:

density (lbs/cf) =
specific heat (btu/lb/deg F) =
thermal conductityty. (btu/in/sq.ft/ deg F) =
melting point def F =
latent heat of fusion btu/lb = boiling point deg. F = latent heat of vaporization btu/lb = viscosity centipoise=

Please reply ASAP.


Elmer Romero
- Los Angeles, California

A. Personally, I don't think you really need to know those numbers, Elmer :-)

I've been sizing heating coils for plating applications for 35 years, and I don't know them because it is valid to calculate the heating requirements as if the solution were water. The fact include: the losses to the ventilation system in a 140 degree tank will vary significantly depending on the exact details of the exhaust system and agitation system and cross drafts -- so you can only approimate; the input heat from the rectifier is a significant variable; the temperature of the incoming water which is used to make up for evaporation losses can be a significant variable. Parts production carries heat into and out of the tank. The drag-in from the preceding rinse can be a significant variable. Naturally, the "U" factor can never be calculated exactingly.

What it comes down to is that there is usually no point in trying to factor in the constants you are seeking because their influence on the answer is lost in round-off error -- whereas you do need to size the coils for the worst-case agitation/ventilation scenario, and with a reasonable allowance for scale build-up in the "U" factor anyhow.

If you're a student rather than an equipment designer with a real-world problem., tell your instructor that if it is just an exercise s/he should include the constants, because nobody actually has occasion to actually use them in this context :-)

Nothing wrong with wanting the numbers for an accurate calculation -- but they vary from one installation to the next and simply don't affect the results, so nobody incorporates them, so few people would know them. Good luck.

Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey

I thank Mr. Eng. Ted Mooney, P.E. Inc. for the straight answer, The fact that the nickel solution is calculated as water is a relief and Yes I need all those factors (if you have them, please). If you would not tell me the easy way "as water", I could use those factors to make my calculations. I am not a student and not a designer of coils. I am on the Boiler/steam and hot water field. When a job comes along, I have to understand what is all about so I can work with the designers of the heat exchangers because I do not like to be treated as a fool. In this case I gave the designer the parameters and he came out with the design. Research really works. I have the impression that you are a better designer and I will contact you if the job matures. Regards, Elmer.

Elmer Romero
- Los Angeles, California

Depending on the concentration, the specific gravity of a nickel sulfamate bath is probably about 1.15 to 1.25. The boiling point is higher than 212 because of the dissolved salt. You could estimate the surface tension as 50 dyne/cm, and maybe extrapolate viscosity from that. Beyond that, I don't think you'll find those numbers in the plating literature although you might possibly find them in a Handbook of Chemical & Physical constants. Good luck.

Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey

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