Wet Chemical Pre-Treatment

© Fraunhofer IFAM
Mini electroplating plant.
Lokale Vorbehandlung mittels Beiz-Klebeband
© Fraunhofer IFAM
Local pre-treatment using a pickling tape
REM-Abbildung eine rbiokompatiblen Schicht auf Titan (Zelladhäsion).
© Fraunhofer IFAM
SEM image of a biocompatible titanium layer (cell adhesion).

Wet Chemical Surface Pre-Treatment prior to Adhesive Bonding and Coating

An appropriate surface treatment is a prerequisite for manufacturing high-quality and durable bonded joints and coatings on metals. Established wet chemical pre-treatment methods are widely used by industry – for example in the aviation and car manufacturing sectors:

  • Cleaning (Removal of contaminants from previous processing steps)
  • Etching and pickling (Removal of non-defined layers, customization of the surface roughness)
  • Protection and activation (Conversion layers, anodization)


Functional layers produced via wet chemical methods

Besides being used for pre-treatment prior to bonding and coating, wet chemical processes can also be employed to generate various functional layers, for example for:

  • Biocompatibility
  • Corrosion protection
  • Abrasion protection
  • Electrical insulation

Advantageous properties can also be realized by combining layers generated via wet chemical methods with products generated via plasma technology and paint/lacquer technology.


Full range of services from a single partner

The expertise at Fraunhofer IFAM covers the entire process chain for wet chemical pre-treatment:

  • Materials' development – including with the help of simulation methods 
  • Process development for wet chemical pre-treatment
  • Analysis of treated surfaces
    > Surface and nanostructure analysis
    > In-line monitoring for quality assurance
  • Manufacture and testing of bonded and coated components
  • Failure/damage analysis
    > Determining the causes of failure
    > Development of customer-specific solutions



Example applications

  • Aluminum: Chromate-free pre-treatment prior to adhesive bonding and coating
  • Titanium: Wet chemical pre-treatment methods for high-resistance bonded joints
  • Steel: Pickling and passivation of alloy steels
  • Aluminum: Local pre-treatment using pickling tape
  • Metal/Polymer implants: Wet chemical pre-treatment mehtods for improving biocompatibiliy