Chemical etching, also known as industrial etching or chemical milling, is a machining technology that works broadly the same way as the traditional melt working method but has many competitive advantages over it, one of which is its applicability of the widest ranges of materials such as metals and alloys – even those are hard to be machining. This article will look at the different types of chemical etching materials and their processes method. Let’s find out the etching materials science below.
The Different Types of Chemical Etching Material
Generally speaking, almost any metal can be chemically etched, yet some chemical etching metal is more accessible to metal etching than others. For the same reason, the industrial sector’s etching demand often focuses on metals with distinctive attributes. These materials’ unique feature ensures that its processes are developed in line with its customers’ market demands.
1.Etching Titanium and Alloys
Titanium material in the chemical etching material is renowned for its lightweight properties, strength, and high-temperature performance. Speaking of the Titanium etching process, it usually involves using an oxidizing agent to dissolve away the metal selectively. Then chemical-etched Titanium will quickly etch a large number of complex components.
Titanium chemical etching material’s challenge lies in the chemical reaction of Titanium material in high heat and protective oxidized coating that generative when exposed to air. This has dramatically damaged the machining pieces’ life and caused the conventional etching process to in vain when it comes to Titanium chemical etching material. To overcome the problems, specialist equipment and process chemistry have developed a chemical etching method (Typically Use Hydrofluoric Acid) to produce etching parts with a quality comparable to etching parts made of conventional materials.
Not only does Aluminum chemical etching material exhibit excellent attributes of Titanium such as strength-to-weight ratios and corrosion-resistant, but it also has a better fatigue limit, making it the ideal material for aerospace applications. Besides its attractive attribute, the fact that it is both malleable and ductile and attributes high conductivity – is also its weak spot for manufacturing.
For example, Aluminum chemical etching material’s flexibility causes wear and pick-up during machining, and it will harden during the punching process. Its heat reflectivity makes it challenging to cut in laser, and because Aluminum releases heat when photoetched, it can cause rough grain edges.
Through the etching process, the operator uses photoresist and chemical etching to precisely process the selected area. The etching process is characterized by maintaining material properties, burr-free and stress-free parts, and has a clean outline and no heat-affected zone. For the same reasons, it provides a cost-effective, highly accurate, and fast manufacturing alternative to traditional sheet metal processing technologies (including stamping, laser, and water jet cutting).
Because of stainless steel chemical etching material’s wide range of available grades and versatility, stainless steel is widely used in various industries, all of which benefit from burr and stress-free features. Yet, etching stainless steel can be somewhat tricky due to its anti-corrosive nature. It required the application of experience and significant investment in processing technologies to optimize customer outcomes.
Stainless steel etching usually involves corrosive chemicals to etch complex shapes from sheets of stainless-steel metal. It is a highly accurate processing method that can produce high accuracy level of complexity with no mechanical stress placed on the material.
As mentioned above, the etching materials science lies in your chosen partner’s experience and etching skill. TMN is the one that offers chemical etching and a variety of other etching services for metal and other materials. TMN has advanced chemical etching technology, making it possible to produce etched titanium parts with extremely tight tolerances. If you want to experience TMN’s service, learn more about TMN’s chemical etching process on the official website.