Session 2: Metal Finishing: Past, Present, and Future
It is of significant interest to heavy industries which rely on high strength steels to understand which process variables contribute the highest risk to degradation modes such as hydrogen embrittlement. Further, the cost of non-quality can be lowered by understanding which variables within a chemical process contribute to these risks.
Hydrogen embrittlement is a degradation mechanism for high-strength steels from hydrogen generated during certain processes. The aerospace industry is highly concerned about this phenomenon. The risks associated with this degradation phenomenon are managed via empirical methods such as baking to relieve the hydrogen from the substrate, however, the exact contributors to hydrogen embrittlement within a chemical process are not well understood. For example, within any plating process, hydrogen is generated in several of the cleaning baths as well as the final plating bath. Each bath's risk is, in turn, affected by multiple sub-variables. This presentation summarizes the work to understand the key process variables which contribute to hydrogen embrittlement within a copper plating process and to summarize the design of experiments which is intended to uncover which of these variables is the highest contributor.