Thin Ni composite coatings with hBN and WS2 particles were ultrasonically-electrodeposited on Cu with no need of a surfactant. Although the combination of mechanical agitation and ultrasound yielded the best dispersions, ultrasound on its own during plating yielded coatings with a more uniform distribution of particles. Ni/hBN and Ni/WS2 composite coatings electrodeposited under ultrasound were characterized by different methods: GD-OES to estimate particle content, XRD to analyse the preferred orientation, FIB-SEM to analyse the surface morphology and microstructure, and microhardness tests to measure the hardness. Whereas Ni/hBN composite coatings showed little difference compared to pure Ni deposits, the incorporation of WS2 into Ni had a significant effect on the preferred orientation, the surface morphology and the grain size of the coatings, refining the Ni crystal down to the nano-scale. The latter had a significant effect in the hardness of the coatings, despite the ‘soft’ nature of the WS2 particles.
Bibliographical noteNOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Surface and Coatings Technology. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Surface and Coatings Technology, [276, (2015)] DOI: 10.1016/j.surfcoat.2015.06.030
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- Composite coatings