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Acid Wash  (Pickling)

  PRC-5010B (NASA)
  Certificates of compliance provided at customer request
  Custom masking and polishing also available
  Quality Control Manual available upon request

Acid Washing, etching or pickling, is a metal surface treatment used to remove impurities, such as stains, inorganic contaminants, rust or scale, from ferrous metals.  A solution called pickle liquor, which contains strong acids, is used to remove the surface impurities. It is commonly used to descale or clean steel.

In a special application, steel is acid cleaned for dye penetrant inspection (DPI).  Because surface impurities produced by mechanical finishing may smear some components of the steel, these can “hide” the surface defects intended to be revealed by the DPI. Acid etching or washing will remove these metallic impurities so the dye can reveal any surface defects.

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