Indium-electroplated films have many industrial applications that take advantage of the unique physical and chemical properties of the indium metal, such as its low melting point, low vapor pressure, inherent softness and malleability, cold welding properties, anti-friction properties, and alloy hardening properties. Indium electroplating applications include surface preparation, decorative finishing on metals and plastics, sealing, aircraft bearings, and electrical interconnects in microelectronic devices. Our complete set of electroplating products includes all materials needed for indium electroplating processes:
Our wide variety of electroplating anodes allows you to choose the correct form factor and indium source for your plating process.
The indium sulfamate plating bath is the most popular electroplating solution.
We also manufacture other electroplating compounds, such as indium sulfate and indium trichloride.
Our electroplating kit is available if you are new to indium electroplating and want to test the process to get started, or would like to plate just a few pieces.
Indium Corporation® manufactures electroplating anodes in several forms:
- With an embedded hook
- Bulk indium metal anodes
- Indium foil
- Indium ribbon
Anodes with embedded hooks are made from Monel® alloy. They are shaped dimensionally true so the anode rod will hang straight. Anodes are available with 7” or 5” hooks.
Sulfamate Plating Bath Solution
Sulfamate plating chemistry is the most popular way to plate indium. A properly maintained bath can last for years with the addition of only a small volume of bath solution to replenish the tank.
Sulfamate electroplating solution is available in small bottles, 55-gallon drums, or larger totes.
Indium sulfamate is preferred indium plating bath for the following reasons:
- The bath is a high throwing power formulation. It is stable, easy to maintain and operate, and has a wide latitude of operational parameters, which allows for heavy industrial use.
- The bath uses soluble indium anodes. This eliminates the need to “bail out” the excess plating bath from concentrate additions and the resultant waste disposal. Other baths require inert anodes that necessitate the use of an expensive liquid concentrate to maintain the indium concentration.
- No costly additives are needed for the operation. Grain refiners and leveling agents are present in sufficient quantities to last the life of the bath.
- The only additive required with an indium plating bath is sulfamic acid when the pH rises above 3.5 and the solution begins to turn milky white.
- Recovery of the spent plating bath solution only requires raising the pH of the solution to precipitate the indium.
- There is no need to incur disposal costs caused by the development of high toxicity or the formulation of cyanide.
If you use your own plating bath chemistry, Indium Corporation offers compounds as anhydrous salts, hydrated forms, and aqueous solutions.
If you need a particular chemistry, please contact us.
Popular indium plating bath materials include:
- Indium sulfate (anhydrous, hydrated, and aqueous solutions)
- Indium trichloride
Indium Corporation’s popular electroplating kit consists of:
- 1 liter of sulfamate plating bath solution
- Two thin strips of indium metal (1” x 12”, 4N purity) as anode material
- A plating manual that explains basic setup, operation, and maintenance of an indium plating bath
Electroplating Technical Documents
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Safety Data Sheets
Electroplating Blog Posts
There is no perfect list of all the materials that indium can solder to, but, with indium, some very surprising things are possible.
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Today we are speaking with Kim Flanagan (Technical Support Engineer) about specifying cryogenic seals.
From One Engineer to Another®
All of Indium Corporation’s products and solutions are designed to be commercially available
unless specifically stated otherwise.