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topic 9563

Organic brighteners in nickel


What is the chemical mechanism of organic brighteners (i.e. saccharin) in nickel electroplating?

Ken Delahoy
Photo Stencil LLC - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA


This is a very complicated question, actually, and a pretty good answer can be found in ASMI's Metals Handbook, Volume 5: Surface Engineering . But as a simplification, brighteners are attracted to the deposition point where they block further plating, thus causing more seed points for a smaller grain size, while also making current flow to the lower current density areas for a more even deposition.

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

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