Precious Metal Cost Reduction

Xtalic designs contact surface solutions that deliver equivalent or better performance while providing a lower precious metal expense.

XTRONIC® is our high wear nanostructured alloy. It provides excellent substrate protection, so less precious metal is required for high performance. Our customers typically save 40% or more of their expense from precious metals.

LUNA® is our patented nanostructured silver alloy. It replaces gold by providing the equivalent performance with a significant cost savings.


Gold is used on connectors to provide a low resistance stable electrical connection. In gold connector interfaces a nickel barrier layer is needed as a Cu diffusion barrier, for additional corrosion protection and to improve durability. Unfortunately both hard gold and conventional nickel barrier layers are porous and although only a thin layer of gold is necessary to provide good electrical contact, additional gold is used due to the porosity of both the gold and nickel layers. If the gold is too thin, these pores will expose the nickel barrier layer, which can lead to nickel and copper corrosion degrading the electrical performance. XTRONIC® is a more corrosion resistant and lower porosity barrier layer than conventional nickel materials, allowing the use of less gold at the contact interface.


Gold is used on connectors to protect against corrosion and to enable a good electrical connection, but it is a costly solution. Silver has the best electrical characteristics but typically tarnishes. It is unable to protect against the environment and doesn’t have the wear durability required for most connector applications. LUNA®, a nanocrystalline metal alloy, provides the performance of gold final finish layers but at a fraction of the cost.

MFG Results

Stable contact resistance in industry standard Telcordia class IIA test


No significant product color change seen after ~2 years in uncontrolled storage



Requirement Tests

LUNA® has successfully passed a full set of core connector requirements.

Test Test Details
Wear Durability
  • Laboratory and product-level testing
  • Like-on-like and crossmating
  • Variety of loads and cycles
  • Four-wire measurement, 5-200g loads
  • EIA-364-65 rev B Class IIA, 20 days
  • 65°C/50%, 85°C/85%
  • 2 days + LLCR, then 5 more days + LLCR
  • Wetting behavior
  • Solder bond strength
  • Cross-section & imaging of soldier joint
Thermal stability
  • Anneal up to 150°C, 1000 hrs
  • IPC-TM-650, Method
Neutral Salt Spray
  • ASTM B-117