Register to reply

How to electroplate paper

by iwant2beoz
Tags: electroplate, paper
Share this thread:
iwant2beoz
#1
Jun23-14, 10:40 AM
P: 94
I am looking for a way to electroplate paper with out disintegrating the paper. Is there a conductive "paint" that I can use? And is there some way to preserve the paper?
Phys.Org News Partner Engineering news on Phys.org
DIY glove-based tutor indicates muscle-memory potential
Tricorder XPRIZE: 10 teams advance in global competition to develop consumer-focused diagnostic device
Study shows local seismic isolation and damping methods provide optimal protection for essential computing equipment
SteamKing
#2
Jun23-14, 10:59 AM
Emeritus
Sci Advisor
HW Helper
Thanks
PF Gold
P: 6,547
Supposing such a process could be developed, how would 'electroplating' paper be useful?
iwant2beoz
#3
Jun23-14, 12:38 PM
P: 94
Because it would be cool to be able to do it. I'm thinking of trying an art project, not something that normally interests me but it's a Monday and I'm bored.

Borek
#4
Jun23-14, 01:39 PM
Admin
Borek's Avatar
P: 23,592
How to electroplate paper

Perhaps using graphite will do. At least to some extent.

However, I am not convinced whatever you deposit will be able to stick to paper. Even when electroplating metals we often have to do tricks (like electroplating with a thin layer of some other metal first) to be sure the final coating won't peel off.
iwant2beoz
#5
Jun24-14, 08:15 AM
P: 94
I think the most difficult part will be finding a way to keep the paper from dissolving away. Most of the time you have to use an acid when electroplating right?
Borek
#6
Jun24-14, 09:41 AM
Admin
Borek's Avatar
P: 23,592
Quote Quote by iwant2beoz View Post
I think the most difficult part will be finding a way to keep the paper from dissolving away. Most of the time you have to use an acid when electroplating right?
Not necessarily, there are recipes for baths that are basic or neutral. Doesn't mean you will be able to find one working with graphite.
iwant2beoz
#7
Jun24-14, 10:30 AM
P: 94
I guess I will just have to try and see what happens:)
christopher.s
#8
Jun24-14, 11:27 AM
P: 17
You are correct that your biggest issue will be the paper dissolving in your bath. It would be better to evaporate your metals onto the paper.
iwant2beoz
#9
Jun24-14, 12:28 PM
P: 94
Quote Quote by christopher.s View Post
You are correct that your biggest issue will be the paper dissolving in your bath. It would be better to evaporate your metals onto the paper.
how might I do that?
Baluncore
#10
Jun24-14, 07:16 PM
Sci Advisor
Thanks
P: 1,923
Vacuum deposition is used to put a reflective metal film coating onto glass mirrors. Put the paper in a vacuum, place a sample of the metal to evaporate on a tungsten filament in the chamber. Heat the filament to boil off the material slowly.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_vapor_deposition
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vacuum_coating
iwant2beoz
#11
Jun24-14, 07:50 PM
P: 94
That sounds pretty cool, but it might be a tad bit out of my budget to build such a device.
Lok
#12
Jun25-14, 01:57 AM
P: 462
Tried rubbing solder on paper, no use.
Graphite works though.
And you can use cotton paper (money paper), the kind that does not dissolve easily in water and a slightly basic solution.
iwant2beoz
#13
Jun25-14, 08:19 AM
P: 94
How did you apply the graphite?
Lok
#14
Jun26-14, 12:55 AM
P: 462
Quote Quote by iwant2beoz View Post
How did you apply the graphite?
I applied it with a borrowed Rotring o.5mm pencil. For some reason pencils had gone out of fashion in my office.
iwant2beoz
#15
Jun26-14, 08:14 AM
P: 94
I dont know why but I thought it would be far more complicated then that.
mheslep
#16
Jun28-14, 05:14 PM
PF Gold
P: 3,098
I might be helpful in answering your question to find out fundamentally what paper is, what electroplating is, why it is possible to attach a charged substance to another. Paper is cellulose, a large organic molecule with atomic weight in the thousands, (C6H10O5)n. Cellulose is readily attached by adhesives to other materials which are commonly electroplated.
Baluncore
#17
Jun28-14, 08:08 PM
Sci Advisor
Thanks
P: 1,923
Cellulose is a natural long chain polymer. Synthetic plastics are also long chain polymers.
If you can electroplate plastics, then how much harder can it be to electroplate paper?

1. This is a great general resource. The electrodeposition of copper onto circuit boards is described here.
http://www2.bren.ucsb.edu/~dturney/p...plating/02.pdf

2. “Electroplating Plastics” http://www.azom.com/article.aspx?ArticleID=525
Then the question becomes, what chemicals are needed to sensitise cellulose?
That answer will let you plate paper, wood and cotton. You could even make "electric string".

3. This one is behind a paywall, but the abstract gives some information. “Electroless Plating of Iron onto Cellulose Fibers” describes depositing a ferromagnetic FeB coating onto Pd/Sn-catalyzed substrates. http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/cm060649o
iwant2beoz
#18
Jul1-14, 12:58 PM
P: 94
Well the paper didn't melt but the graphite didn't pick up any metal. Just to make sure that my set up was working I attached a an inch long piece of pencil lead and it is covered in copper. It's quite an irregular plating but it's working. Any idea why the paper didn't plate?


Register to reply

Related Discussions
How to reproduce plots from a reference paper to put in my own paper Math & Science Software 8
How does production cost of absorbent paper compare to that of printer paper? Materials & Chemical Engineering 1
Electroplate Cu on gold Chemistry 2
Paper Tower - Mats: (1) Letter Size Paper Engineering, Comp Sci, & Technology Homework 3
Remove printer ink one colour paper witout demge paper Chemistry 2