Part of most production processes
In the field of industrial component cleaning, various cleaning processes are an essential part of many production and coating processes. Cleaning removes unwanted layers or particles from component surfaces and ensure an optimum in further processing. Cleaning processes are differentiated according to their active principle. In addition to thermal, mechanical and radiant processes, fluidic (e. g. ultrasound) and chemical cleaning methods have also been established. Often different cleaning approaches are combined to achieve the desired effect. The following example shows, however, that residues from a cleaning process can quickly cancel the complex cleaning process.
Surfactant residues as cause of adhesion problems
Small Cause - Great Effect
Despite a complex degreasing and a subsequent plasma cleaning, adhesion problems occurred on a nickel surface. In order to clarify this problem, the lateral distribution of the detected substances was investigated by means of ToF-SIMS. The analyses showed that dodecylbenzene sulphonic acid (DDBS) could be detected on the cleaned metal surface. This substance was identified as part of the used cleaning additive which was not completely been removed from the metal surface due to rinsing with distilled water. Even the subsequent plasma cleaning could not completely remove the DDBS residues, so that the surfactant residues caused adhesion failure in the next production step. Based on these analysis results, the final cleaning of the Ni plates was optimized and the failure rate due to adhesion problems was significantly reduced.