Benefits of Anodizing

Outperform and Outlast

As the manufacturing industry continues to grow so do the demands of product performance and longevity. Anodizing is a process that has been used and developed by industry for just over a century, and today remains a primary process for treating aluminum. While standing the test of time, anodizing expanded into many sectors of industry including military, medical, tech, and architecture. The unique qualities of anodized aluminum, combined with its being a safe and sustainable process, have made it one of the best options for coating parts. 

Anodizing grows the already naturally occurring aluminum oxide, thickening it into a durable barrier layer that separates the aluminum surface from the outside environment. As a result, the part is insulated by the tough inorganic oxide layer that can protect parts for decades.

At Semano, we specialize in anodizing for semiconductor manufacturing which is how we got our name; semiconductor-anodizing (SEM + ANO). The advantages we can provide are reinforced corrosion resistance, durability, dielectric strength, and choice of color. In general, the turnaround for anodizing is very fast at a value that can’t be beaten by other coating options. 

Corrosion Resistance

While aluminum has some corrosion resistance, it still breaks down over time – especially in corrosive environments. This will lead to defective parts and will contaminate the surroundings with the alloy constituents. For semiconductor manufacturing, anodizing is crucial for protecting critical components exposed to acids and plasma. Better quality anodization leads to improved tool uptime and higher yields. Anodizing provides a thin yet durable layer of protection that does not easily abrade or corrode. 

Here are some general characteristics to remember:

      • Type III has better corrosion resistance than Type II, but doesn’t beat AX200
      • Thicker Coatings are generally better protected from corrosion and last longer
      • A Sealing Process closes pores and further increases corrosion resistance
      • Galvanic Corrosion and aggressive chemical environments are protected against
      • Part Lifespan will extend far beyond that of bare aluminum in corrosive environments

Increased Durability

Anodizing will additionally improve the durability of aluminum. The photo on the right shows bare aluminum next to Type III (Hardcoat). While there is almost negligible dimensional change, the wear and hardness are significantly increased. Hardcoat is generally the most toughest, but any type of anodizing will help to improve part durability.

Here are some general characteristics to remember:

      • Dimensional Change of under 80 microns or 0.003″ which is the upper limit of Type III
      • Part Hardness is greatly increased due to the added oxide thickness
      • Resistant to forms of abrasion such as scratching, impact, fretting, galling, etc.
      • Part Lifespan will be increased due to the added durability of anodizing

Dielectric Strength

Like most metals, aluminum is a good conductor of electricity. This factor can be detrimental to some operations because, among other issues, electrical leakage can damage sensitive electronics and parts. The aluminum oxide grown by anodizing is completely non-conductive and can withstand high voltages without failure. It can perform as an electrical insulator and alternative to traditional methods of electrical insulation. 

Here are some general characteristics to remember:

      • Non Conductive on the aluminum oxide surface, stops the flow of electrons
      • Dielectric Strength varies based on the type of anodizing you choose
      • Thicker Coatings generally will have higher dielectric strength
      • Alternative Option to ceramic or polymer electrical insulation

Color

Anodizing also can have a great effect on the surface finish and overall appearance of aluminum parts. The andozing process produces a smooth uniform finish that can be dyed or naturally processed to have a specific color profile. The color is impacted based on the process parameters and choice of anodize electrolyte, allowing for natural color to take effect. Anodize pores are also perfect for dye transfer and the sealing process closes the pores, locking in the color. 

Here are some general characteristics to remember:

      • Anodize Color depends on process and ranges from clear to black
      • Clear Coat is a natural finish and typically resembles the aluminum surface
      • Hard Coat is a natural matte black finish, not as deep in color as black dye.
      • Dye Options we provide are black and gold but other colors are possible

Repairability

Part refurbishment is typically a complicated and potentially expensive undertaking. However, we offer touch up repairs and full reworks at a fraction of what it costs to scrap parts. Often times parts are in good condition but small anodize defects lead to them being scrapped at OEM or customer expense. By extending the lifecycle of parts we help you retain considerable value and also reduce the environmental impacts of machining new parts.

Here are some general characteristics to remember:

      • Spot Anodizing is a technique we use to re-anodize small defects as pictured
      • Full Rework involves stripping and re-anodizing the part to OEM condition
      • Anodize Performance is tailored to match or surpass the OEM specifications
      • Cosmetic appearance can be improved through a cleaning process

Value

When it comes down to the lowest price, anodizers become a dime a dozen. But when the cheap coating soon fails under corrosive, abrasive, or high voltage conditions the value is completely lost. Semano is one of the only shops certified to anodize for the semiconductor industry which has stringent specifications to comply with. We pride ourselves in delivering world-class anodizing that outperforms and outlasts the rest. While we specialize in rapid turnaround low-volume orders, we are also equipped to run high-volume production parts with the same excellent quality. You can expect the cost to drop with higher volume orders, so contact us today and get a quote on your next project!

Here are some general characteristics to remember:

      • Pricing varies based on the desired processes, specifications, and turnaround time
      • Dedication to delivering our customers the highest quality parts
      • We Support our customers with any questions, issues, or concerns that arise

How do we Manage Quality?

Get in touch! We are looking forward to start a new project with you.