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Coventya recognizes Global Certified Applicators

coventec plaques

What are COVENTEC Plaques?

COVENTYA has a well established group of applicators certified to apply the numerous approved finishes for the automotive industry.  COVENTEC is a program we implemented that ensures our automotive OEM partners receive finishes that consistently meet the anticipated quality and performance criteria. 

Related to this, COVENTYA’s certified applicator partners invest heavily to support this business through proper employee training, new equipment installation, maintenance, calibration and significant documentation.  COVENTYA recognizes this commitment with a special plaque. 

A&1 receive COVENTEC Plaque Original COVENTEC plaque

COVENTYA’s Eric FENG and Chunguang HAN
present the COVENTEC Approved Applicator
plaque to Peter Zhang, General Manager of
A&1 Grand Champion Plating

 

The plaques are made of bamboo, a wood that is viewed as a sustainable resource due to its high growth rate.  The brushed aluminum nameplate specifies the COVENTEC approved process and each year a new LEAF is added to recognize the passing of a COVENTEC audit.

We expect to present plaques to all of our approved applicators by end of Spring 2014 and to congratulate our partner applicators for a job well done.

The new ENOVA RI systems

ENOVA RI web

Welcome to the fifth generation of reduced ion electroless nickel systems: ENOVA RI.

Coventya has launched a new line of ENOVA EN systems called ENOVA RI, or ENOVA Reduced Ion which is what the April Products Finishing and corresponding PF-online version covers.

Discover our article on Product Finishing online for more details and watch the video clip of our International Product Manager, Brad Durkin, answering all your questions about this new generation of ENOVA.

http://www.pfonline.com/articles/fifth-generation-reduced-ion-electroless-nickel-systems

Opening Ceremony in Pune, India

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COVENTYA India opens New Facility

COVENTYA is pleased to announce the opening of our new facility in Pune India.  The state of the art manufacturing plant was necessary to meet the demands of our growing customer base. 

Managing Director Chandrashekhar MARATHE offered the following:

“We are certain that the market will recognize the significant investment we have made in India and the message should be clear. COVENTYA is committed to this country.  With the capacity to produce 7000 tons of surface treatment chemicals each year we look forward to growing side by side with our customers”.

The opening ceremony was attended by over 140 people from all over the world and they enjoyed a traditional event that included the application of Indian tilak on their forehead and a ritual to invoke the lord of wisdom called   Ganesh Vandana performed gracefully by a local artist in Bharat Natyam style.

Indian Facility Opening Ceremony

In addition to the production resources, the ultra modern facility also houses a world class laboratory, full analytical instrumentation and a pilot plant to support the technical needs of our customers.

COVENTYA is excited to be part of the growing surface treatment market in India and with our recent investments in people and infrastructure we look to the future with confidence.

BIP Auto Magazine article

BIP auto web

Coventya published an exciting article in BIP Auto Magazine about the Trivalent Decorative Chrome deposits in the automotive Industry.

Bright and attractive, decorative chrome on grills, bumpers, logos and trim have a long and positive association with the automobile. The success of decorative chrome is a direct result of its deceptively beautiful finish which often belies its durability.  With only a very thin film (0.1 – 0.8 µm), chrome provides excellent corrosion and abrasion resistance as well as resistance to tarnishing. 

Chrome deposits are not stand alone finishes and are usually applied as part of a layer system. Typically plated over a bright nickel or in some cases, multiple layers of nickel, decorative chrome can be applied on top of steel, aluminium, copper alloy, zinc die cast and most notably, a variety of plastic materials.

In addition to the automotive industry, decorative chrome deposits are widely used on sanitary fittings such as shower heads and water faucets as well as consumer items such as fragrance packaging, home appliances and personal items like belt buckles and luggage.

Although the electroplated chrome deposit is completely non toxic and safe for consumers, the hexavalent chrome chemicals used to create the deposit are very dangerous.  Hexavalent (CrVI) chromium compounds are very toxic and are classified as CMR compounds; (carcinogenic, mutagenic, repro-toxic).  On April 17, 2013 the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) published an updated version of the Annex XIV that includes chromium trioxide and other CrVI compounds.  CrVI is now subject to authorization under REACH legislation and the date where its use is banned (the “Sunset date”) for chromium trioxide has been set as September 21, 2017.  The latest date to apply for an authorization (which allows continued use for rare instances) is March 21, 2016.   After the “Sunset date” it will be impossible to use chromium trioxide without authorization.

The COVENTYA Group has long considered new environmental regulations as opportunities to elevate technology rather than difficult business barriers to overcome.  Several years ago, when the possibility of restrictive measures on CrVI first appeared on the horizon, the COVENTYA Group launched an extensive R&D project to develop a commercially viable, CrVI free chrome process for decorative applications. 

In 2005 the COVENTYA Group was pleased to introduce an environmentally friendly decorative chrome process based upon trivalent chromium (CrIII.).  Since its release, TRISTAR 300 has been widely accepted as an innovative yet reliable alternative to CrVI chromium based electrolytes for decorative applications.

The following chart illustrates the differences between a process based on CrVI and CrIII technology, COVENTYA TRISTAR 300.

Parameter

Hexavalent Chromium (CrVI)

Chrome 200

Trivalent Chromium (CrIII)

 TRISTAR 300

Chrome (g/L)

200 g/L

20 g/L

Temperature (°C)

25°-35°C

30°-35°C

Cathode current density (A/dm²)

6-12 A/dm²

8-12 A/dm²

pH

< 1

2.5 –  3.0

Deposition speed (µm/min.)

0.03 - 0.05

0.07 - 0.12

Anodes

Insoluble Pb/Sn or Pb/Sb

Insoluble graphite

Filtration

Not necessary

Necessary

Agitation

Not necessary

Air

Color (cielab)

L : 85

a* : -1

b* : -1.1

L : 78

a* : 0.02

b* : 0.8

 

As mentioned in the chart, chrome deposits, including TRISTAR 300 deposits, are applied on top of and in combination with multiple layers of nickel. By developing favourable galvanic interactions through the use of semi-bright, bright and microporous or microcracked nickel deposits TRISTAR 300, is able to pass the “Russian mud” test which simulates the exposed exterior plated parts to CaCl2 instead of NaCl as winter de-icing salts. This environment has proven to be very difficult for hexavalent chrome deposits which currently cannot fulfil all of the specifications of the automotive industry.

Often it is difficult to pass corrosion tests, especially on parts with wide current density distribution due to complex geometry. TRISTAR 300 not only passes the Russian Mud test but also passes 48 hours of CASS test (Copper Accelerated Acetic Acid Salt Spray) without any chrome VI based post-passivation and even after a thermal cycle according to the PSA standard B154140.

The COVENTYA Group is dedicated to develop new products and will soon introduce a very exciting layer system that has the potential to push the corrosion protection even further.

The image below depicts the typical layering sequence required for TRISTAR 300 on a plastic substrate.

 TRISTAR 300 layers

There are some in the industry that feel decorative chrome electroplating is facing extinction and the best course of action is a complete shift away from plating altogether. This approach appears nearly impossible as the likelihood of finding a coating that delivers both the beauty and durability of chrome is very small.  

The COVENTYA Group, on the other hand, understands the foothold this technology holds and the prominent place it has in our world.  Our customers and valued OEM partners rely heavily upon this technology and before simply watching it fade away on the sunset date we would work hard to extend the horizon for many more years.

Based upon the market feedback of our TRISTAR 300 system, it has become clear that our efforts have resulted in a viable, and eco-responsible deposit that can withstand a corrosive world and look great doing it.

Coventya France at the Village de la Chimie

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On 14 & 15 March 2014, in the heart of Parc Floral de Vincennes, Paris, COVENTYA participated to the Village de la Chimie for the fourth consecutive year.

This event brings together companies from the chemical industry and allows students with all kind of backgrounds to discover and explore different possible carrers. During this edition, junior high school, high school, university students and experienced chemists have been able to discover the stands and activities of about 60 companies and training organizations.

COVENTYA has mobilized a versatile team including chemists and administrative support employees and allowing us to present a very exciting demonstration of a POP process (several demonstrations during the event), our company and its business.

POP demonstration POP demonstration 2

For two days the team answered to many questions with interactive activities that drew the public’s attention: quizzes on chemistry (according to student levels) and gifts, presentation of our activities through videos, live manupulations with direct description on the stand.

Again this year, the Village was very positive for COVENTYA. It is always a good opportunity for us to show all the different work possibilities the surface treatment sector offers and draw student’s attention on the possible career evolutions. It is also a great way to establish contact with potential future talents for the company.