Applied Surface Science, Vol.257, No.7, 3135-3139, 2011
Adhesion enhancement between electroless nickel and polyester fabric by a palladium-free process
A new, efficient, palladium-and etchant-free process for the electroless nickel plating of poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) fabric has been developed. PET electroless plating can be prepared in three steps, namely: (i) the grafting of thiol group onto PET, (ii) the silver Ag-0 seeding of the PET surface, and (iii) the nickel metallization using electroless plating bath. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) analysis, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), Raman spectrometer, X-ray diffraction (XRD), and thermogravimetric analysis (TG) were used to characterize the samples in the process, and the nickel loading was quantified by weighing. This process successfully compares with the traditional one based on KMnO4/H2SO4 etching and palladium-based seed layer. The nickel coating obtained in this palladium-free process can pass through ultrasonic washing challenge, and shows excellent adhesion with the PET substrate. However, the sample with Pd catalyst via traditional process was damaged during the testing experiment. (C) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.