Platinum electroplating is used for coating electrodes, which are used in the refinement of oil and in the production of fertilizers, acids, and even explosives. The automotive industry uses platinum-plated catalytic converters in order to take care of automobile exhaust emission. In the health care industry, platinum plates are used in instruments such as catheters and connectors for surgical equipment. In electroplating, platinum is often used to coat titanium, niobium, or stainless steel anodes or rods.
It is also used in the jewelry industry because its luster is much purer compared to silver or gold, which enhances the brilliance of gemstones, such as diamonds and rubies. Platinum plating does not discolor or oxidize, and it is hypoallergenic, which means that it does not react with the human skin like gold and other metals can.
There are two types of platinum plating, namely acidic plating and neutral plating. Acidic plating is used in electrical applications because of the good conductivity that the metal provides. On the other hand, neutral plating is used for aerospace applications because of its corrosion resistance properties and is used for decorative applications.
Platinum electroplating is similar to palladium electroplating and is used extensively in electronics, medical implants, and scientific instruments. Electroplated platinum finishes offer a moderate cost alternative solution compared to rhodium and other precious metals.
The actual process of electroplating is very simple and involves the plating of a desired metal by immersing it in a salt solution of the metal (in this case platinum), which, in turn, adheres to the anode or the metal rod that is to be electroplated. This process is carried out by many industries specializing in this field and can be done at home if the required equipment is available.