Session Details

Session 4: Advancements in Automotive Finishing

Abstract Number:


The General Metal Finishing industry is a large supplier of silver ‎plating to the automotive industry. With the ‎advent of EV vehicles ‎the requirements for higher voltage and temperature silver are of ‎great interest. This ‎paper deals directly with new alloys that have ‎the ability to meet these requirements without significantly ‎‎increasing cost. These coatings will clearly find their place in the ‎automotive industry as requirement ‎continue to increase.‎


Automotive Industry
Advances in Surface Finishing Technology

The paper will introduce new silver alloys and their improved properties as functional and ‎alternative coatings. The paper compares these alloys to the established coatings such as ‎hard gold and palladium-nickel with flash gold in E-Mobility and High Power industrial ‎applications.‎

Gold and palladium have been used long time as contact materials for technical surfaces. ‎Due to rising precious metal prices, silver and silver alloys are increasingly coming into focus ‎to replace these coatings.‎

The goal is to review the status of current development of various silver alloys and their ‎competitive properties vs. the disadvantages of pure silver coatings. Especially under the ‎aspect of long-term stability, these new silver alloys show their real potential.‎
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In hardness, stable contact resistance and tri-biological properties which remain consistent ‎over long term even at elevated temperatures. Requirements such as end-of-life in the ‎automotive sector are covered in an exemplary manner.‎

For e.g. an innovative silver dispersion electrolyte and plated layers out of it have similar ‎electric properties like a pure silver coating but offering a very low COF and no tendency for ‎galling. These are properties that a pure silver coating can’t offer. Additionally, if we look ‎into a silver palladium alloy, which has competitive properties vs hard gold or palladium-‎nickel we add the benefit of a cyanide free process.‎

Silver alloys are already used and established in industrial and automotive electronics, but ‎with limitations in the field of electroplating, especially for R2R plating of connectors, which ‎this paper will also briefly review.‎

In summary, silver alloys and their advantageous properties open up options to be used as ‎an alternative functional coating for existing connector applications as well as opportunities ‎in other industries such as high power applications, the next generation of e-mobility and ‎high power industrial connectors.‎


Richard DePoto

Business Development Manager

Umicore Galvanotechnik GmbH / Uyemura International

Robert Ziebart

Business Development Manager

Umicore Galvanotechnik GmbH / Uyemura International