Hard chromium is caught up in the turmoil of EU regulation no. 348/2013 which will prohibit the use of chromium in its Hexavalent form (Chrome VI - Cr6+) from September 2017.
Indeed, the hard chromium-plating process uses chromic acid and therefore chromium VI.
Chromium VI is therefore present:
• In the chromic acid sludges
• In the surrounding atmosphere
• On the tools and other masks
• In the rinse waters
Of all the alternatives to hard chromium, nitriding treatments and more particularly CLIN treatments are the most acceptable.
Numerous applications have already given way to CLIN treatments as a replacement for hard chromium, such as engine valves, gas cylinder rods, hydraulic cylinder rods, etc.
Below is a summary of the advantages of CLIN treatments compared with hard chromium deposition.