A method for polyaniline coatings on solid polystyrene surfaces and electroless copper deposition

Girginer B., KARAGOZ B., Urgen M. K., BICAK N.

SURFACE & COATINGS TECHNOLOGY, vol.202, no.17, pp.4176-4182, 2008 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 202 Issue: 17
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.surfcoat.2008.03.005
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.4176-4182
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


A new efficient method is presented for electroless copper deposition on solid polystyrene surfaces via polyaniline (PANI) coatings. It was demonstrated that, partial polymerization of aniline by catalytic air oxidation in the presence of dissolved polystyrene (PS) (M-n : 87.000 K) gives viscous solution of PANI-PS mixture in aniline. Direct application of the polymerization mixture with copper catalyst onto polystyrene sheets (5 x 15 cm) resulted in extension of the polymerization by air oxygen to give a smooth PANI-PS composite layer on the host surface. Treatment of the surface with a similar PANI solution without PS gave Emeraldine base film with homogenously dispersed copper. Reduction of the surface copper by diluted hydrazine (5%) yielded zero-valent copper serving as seed points for accumulation of more copper from an electroless plating solution in the following process. Experiments showed that, the method presented offers a simple pathway to produce excellent copper deposits on PS substrate. This method is superior to traditional electroless plating process, since tedious surface etching and expensive palladium activation steps are being avoided. The surface characteristics were examined by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), adhesion tests and contact angle measurements. The results showed that, the electroless plating process gives a homogeneous and highly robust copper layer with 34.2 mu m of thickness within 48 h. Adhesion of the copper layer to the underlining surface was satisfactory as inferred from pull-off measurements (1.6 N/mm(2)). (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.