Ion plating and sputtering offer materials engineers versatile coating methods. Both processes use a controlled pressure chamber and vacuum equipment. Sputtering is essentially a line of sight deposition method. The coating material is partially ionized, following electrical lines of force, during ion plating, uniformly coating the substrate configuration. Both processes-their applications and advantages-are discussed. Although the processes are not economically competitive with electroplating or other conventional coating methods, the properties they provide may offset the costs.