Metal finishing is a key part of the manufacturing process in a wide variety of industries – everything from jewelry-making to electronics, automotive, and telecommunications. Beyond just improving appearance or reflectivity, metal finishing alters the surface of metal to enhance a wide variety of its properties – from its hardness and resistance to corrosion, chemicals, or wear − to enhanced conductivity, tolerance to torque and shaping. According to an industry manual produced by the Northeast Waste Management Officials’ Association (NEWMOA), when taken as a whole, it is one of the largest users of toxic chemicals in the U.S. Electroplating alone is the second largest end user of nickel and nickel compounds and accounts for a large percentage of chromium. Copper and cobalt are key elements used in plating processes. Accordingly, the U.S. Environmental Protection Industry promulgated effluent guidelines (40 CFR 433) in 1983.
While there are many different plating processes, in general, objects typically move through a series of baths containing chemicals. Galvanic systems enable proper control of the bath parameters for efficient operation of the plating steps, assuring optimal quality and reducing waste. Real-time monitoring of your wastewater-treatment process enables automatic adjustment as conditions change before effluent discharge so you can remain in compliance with regulatory requirements. This helps avoid crisis events and potential fines.
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