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Membranes prepared via electroless plating

pubblicazioni - Articolo

Membranes prepared via electroless plating

Pietro Pinacci*, Maria Broglia*, Angelo Basile** Libro: John Wiley & Sons ISBN: 978-0-470-74652-3 * RSE SpA ** CNR ITM Palladium alloy membranes are widely studied for hydrogen separation in membrane reactors. Due to the considerable cost of palladium, research efforts have been addressed in obtaining low thickness deposits on cheaper support materials such as ceramics and metals by various techniques, including electroless plating. Electroless plating, in fact, is an autocatalytic process which allows obtaining thin films with good adhesion characteristics: deposition occurs by the reaction in solution of a metal salt and a chemical reducing agent, without the use of external electric power. As a consequence, the deposition process occurs on both conductive and non-conductive materials, such as ceramics and plastics; further it does not require expensive set-up and is relatively easy to scale-up from laboratory to industrial scale Due to the above characteristics, electroless plating is nowadays a wide spread industrial practice: it is commonly used in engineering coating applications where wear resistance, hardness and corrosion protection is required. The most common plated metals include nickel, copper, silver, gold, zinc, chrome, palladium and tin. For example gold plating is used in electronic industry to provide a corrosion-resistant conductive layer on copper, in printed circuits and electrical connectors. Similarly thin chromium deposits (approximately 10 microns) are used to provide a mirror like finish to metal surfaces, while thinner chromium deposits (up to 1000 microns) are used for anti- wear applications in automotive industry. In this chapter, after a brief insight concerning electroless plating , the discussion will be focused on the preparation of Pd and Pd alloys on different type of supports, by evidencing critical issues linked to the specific support. Finally membrane performances in membrane reactors will be also discussed.

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