Plating anodes are, in fact, made of lead alloys of different compositions for greater conduction of electricity and corrosion resistance. Each type of lead anode has benefits that make it suitable for different applications.
Lead anode alloys generally consist of tin, silver, and antimony. The favored alloys, based on the specific application, are lead- antimony tin as well as lead-silver alloys. One reason for this is because of the alloys’ resistance to corrosion in the sulfuric acid that’s used for electrolytic solutions. (Lead-alloy anodes are used in electro winning – also known as electro extraction – as well as for plating metals such as manganese, copper, nickel, and zinc.) Lead anodes have superior attributes, such as being highly resistant to the corrosive effects of seawater.
The ongoing demands for continuous improvement in the plating industry has led to changes in the manufacture of lead anodes. In addition to various lead alloys, different formats of lead anodes are manufactured for different purposes. For example, in the effort to improve plating processes, plating operations have increasingly made the move from rectangular and/or flat anodes to solid round anodes.
Round anodes have an active electrical surface around the anode’s entire perimeter. This is advantageous because it means less voltage is required to carry the electrical current. As well, more amperage can be carried without disproportionate heating. Furthermore, round anodes do not have “dead spots” where there is no electric current; a problem that would otherwise result in the shortened life span of the anode. This is just one example of a preferred format that offers a longer lifespan with more assured electrical efficiency.
Lead anodes can be manufactured in formats to suit different purposes. This is one of the areas of expertise of Canada Metal North America (CMNA), which manufactures lead anodes in various formats and of different alloys to suit specific client requirements and applications. Canada Metal’s lead anode formats include:
- Cored stick (Up to 2.5”dia. Cu core.)
Lead anodes and the various types of alloys used for anodes are of central importance to a broad range of industries. Canada Metal is a longstanding producer of metals with a history dating back to its origins in 1893. The company serves industries in aerospace, defense, commercial marine, oil and gas, and more. To learn more about anode formats and materials, as well as to understand the benefits of each, Canada Metal welcomes inquiries.