Nitric Passivation Service

Though citric passivation is gaining popularity because it’s more environmentally friendly, nitric acid passivation is still the more popular form of passivation because of its ability to form a chromium-rich oxide passive layer on stainless steel. Able has provided passivation services since 1954.

Before using nitric acid passivation, we ensure that all steel surfaces must be free of oxide scale, organic contamination, machining lubricants, oil, and grease.

The Need for Passivation

As explained in Euro Inox’s publication Pickling and Passivating Stainless Steel, “Steel delivered from manufacturing mills and reputable stockholders will be fully passive. The treatment may be needed however on intricately shaped machine parts. In these special cases, the supply of oxygen to all the newly formed surfaces may be restricted, resulting in the natural passivation process taking longer to complete, than on the open, exposed surfaces. There is a danger that if parts like these are put straight into service in an environment normally considered suitable for the particular steel grade used, they might not be fully passive and suffer unpredictable corrosion. Passivation treatments done under these circumstances eliminate these unnecessary corrosion risks.”

Passivation vs. Electropolishing

After nitric passivation, do your parts still have issues with burrs, micro cracks, contamination, corrosion, or cleanability?

Do you want to treat metals beyond stainless steel, like Nitinol or titanium?

If so, electropolishing is likely a better option. Among other advantages, electropolishing provides the ability to remove a microscopically precise layer of surface material, to tolerances as low as +/-.0001″, depending on the alloy.  This degree of precision and consistency, along with the ability to remove a variety of surface imperfections in one process, is why electropolishing is so often specified for critical parts used in medical implants and surgical instruments, aerospace components and fragile or critical parts used in other industries. It’s a one-stop process for a micro-smooth, ultraclean, corrosion and pathogen-resistant surface finish – with 30 times more corrosion resistance than passivation.

Electropolishing eliminates the need for additional metal finishing processes like hand deburring, tumbling, cleaning, and passivation.

Get Started

Whether electropolishing or passivation is the right process for you, we offer the highest-quality finishing services. Our state-of-the-art 45,000 SQFT facility operates 3 shifts, 5 days a week. We offer expedited service, can handle parts of any size, and provide customized processing for every part, including custom racking. Start with a sample finish of your part for free.

Contact us to learn more about nitric passivation

Medical Device Manufacturing

Our tightly controlled quality process and ISO 9001 and ISO 13485 certifications make us the preferred partner for many medical device manufacturers across the globe. From implantable devices to surgical instruments, electropolishing is a single-process treatment that results in biocompatible, safe and ultra clean parts.

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We offer aerospace vendors and original equipment manufacturers our signature metal finishing services to increase fatigue-resistance for their metal parts, rendering them capable of withstanding the stress and corrosion that comes with long-term use. Surface abnormalities lead to part failure, but with electropolishing, parts become more reliable and long lasting.

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Our strict adherence to industry standards ensures that pharmaceutical components are electropolished in accordance with ASTM B912 and ASME BPE specifications. These products are clean and smooth, corrosion resistant and contaminant free.

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Corrosion resistance and microfinish improvement are essential for critical automotive parts, making electropolishing an increasingly beneficial option for automakers. Electropolishing both interior and exterior auto parts ensures they will resist premature failure and function at an optimal level.

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Consumer Appliance

Notable examples of appliance parts we electropolish are 400-series stainless steel alloys used in many consumer appliances. Our metal finishing services help increase corrosion resistance for these parts, and by removing the outermost layer of metal withelectropolishing the durability and longevityof these appliance components is increased.

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Food & Beverage

We have a long history of working with the food and beverage industry. Electropolishing materials for this industry eliminates the buildup of bacterial biofilms, as well as keeping the equipment free of contaminants like Salmonella. When it comes to food and beverage processing equipment, safety and cleanliness are of the upmost importance and electropolishing delivers the level of sanitation required by a number of regulatory agencies.

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Hydraulics & Pneumatics

From robotics to heavy mobile equipment, the uses of electropolishing in the hydraulics and pneumatics industry are many. By helping prevent premature part failure, electropolishing reduces the amount of downtime and increases the life cycle of these components. Proper surface finish and cleanliness is key in this industry, and electropolishing attains the finishour customers require.

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Improving conductivity and performance is just one benefit electropolishing offers for electronics parts. The surface finish is improved by as much as 50 percent, removing imperfections from the material without removing a lot of material removal from the component.

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