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CHAPTER - 1 CORROSION

CORROSION*
1. Degradation of a metal by chemical or Electro-chemical means.
2. Two mechanisms are involved,
3. Electrical Circuit and Chemical Reaction.
ELECTRICAL CIRCUIT ;

1. In corrosion circuit the current is always D.C. (Direct Current).


2. For corrosion circuit to exist three things are needed: Anode, Cathode and Electrolyte.
1-AN ANODE

1. Positively charged area? (It becomes positively charged because the atoms release two
electrons), the iron atom has 26 of each, protons and electrons, in its passive state

2. When the two electrons are released the atom still has its 26 protons, but now only 24
electrons.

3. (In this state the atom is now an ion, positively charged by two units and written as Fe ++.)

4. (An ion is a charged particle, and can be positive or negative, a single atom or a group of
atoms, known as a molecule.)

5. This losing of electrons can be shown as: - Fe Fe ++ + 2e.


(The Fe++ is called a positive iron ion).

2-A CATHODE
Negatively charged area (where there are more electrons than needed in its passive state). At the
cathode the electrons enter into the electrolyte to pass back to the anode.

3-AN ELECTROLYTE

1. A substance, which will conduct a current and be broken down by it, (dissociate into ions).

2. Water, Acids, alkalis and salts in solution are very efficient electrolytes.

THE CHEMICAL REACTION;

1. Only the chemical reaction, (the formation of corrosion products), occurs at the Anode.
2. The positive iron ions, Fe++, receive the returning hydroxyl ions and ionically bond together
to form iron hydroxide, which is hydrous iron oxide, rust, and is shown by the formula:

Fe ++ + 2O Fe (OH) 2.

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CHAPTER - 1 CORROSION
CORROSION ONLY OCCURS AT THE ANODE, NEVER AT THE CATHODE.

The corrosion triangle shows the three elements needed for corrosion to occur, Anode, Cathode and
Electrolyte.

If any one of these three is removed from the triangle, corrosion cannot occur.
The one most commonly eliminated is the electrolyte.

Placing a barrier between the electrolyte and the anodic and cathodic areas, in the form of a coating
or paint system does this.
If electrolyte is not in direct contact with anode and cathode, there can be no circuit, and so no
corrosion.
E

Figure1.2The.corrosion.triangl

A C

CERTAIN FACTORS CAN INCREASE THE REACTION RATE, LISTED BELOW ARE SOME
OF THESE.

1 TEMPERATURE.

1. Steel, is thermodynamically unstable metal.


2. The hotter the steel, the faster is the corrosion.

2 HYGROSCOPIC SALTS.

1. A hygroscopic salt is one, which will attract water and dissolve in it.
2. When salts are present on a substrate and a coating is applied over them, water will be
drawn through the film and the resulting solution builds up a pressure under the film.

3. Eventually the film is forced up to form blisters.


4. These blisters are called osmotic or hygroscopic blisters, and are defined as pinhead
sized water filled blisters.

5. Sulphates and Chlorides are the two most common salts,

6. Chlorides in marine environments.

7. Sulphates in industrial areas and sometimes agricultural.

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CHAPTER - 1 CORROSION
3 AEROBIC CONDITIONS,

(Presence of oxygen

4 PRESENCE OF SOME TYPES OF BACTERIA

1. SRBs - Sulphur Reducing Bacteria,

2. MEMs, - Metal Eating Microbes.

5 ACIDS AND ALKALIS

6 BI-METALLIC CONTACT.

1. Otherwise known as Bi-Metallic Corrosion.


2. Metals can be listed in order of nobility.
3. A noble metal is one, which will not corrode.
4. In descending order, the further down the list the metal is, the more reactive it is, and so, the
more anodic it is, the metal loses its electrons to become reactive ions.
5. The degree of activity can be expressed as potential, in volts.
6. The list can be called
7. Galvanic List, Electro Motive forces series or the Electro-Chemical series.

SR# MATERIAL KNOWN POTENTIAL AV. VALUES


1 Graphite + 0.25 v
2 Titanium 0.0 v
3 Silver - 0.1 v
4 Nickel - 0.15 v
5 Lead - 0.2 v
6 Brass - 0.3 v
7 Copper - 0.35 v
8 Tin - 0.35 v
9 Mill Scale - 0.4 v
10 Low Alloy Steel - 0.7 v
11 Mild Steel - 0.7 v
12 Aluminium Alloys - 0.9 v
13 Zinc - 1.0 v
14 Magnesium - 1.6 v

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CHAPTER - 1 CORROSION
* MILLSCALE ;
1. Is immediately above steel on the galvanic list.
2. This means that millscale is Cathodic to steel, and if left on the surface of steel will accelerate
the corrosion of the steel substrate.

3. Millscale is formed during the rolling operation of steel sections e.g. RSC, RSA, RSJ.
4. The oxides of iron form very quickly at temperatures in excess of 580 oc.
5. The first oxide formed is FeO, iron oxide, the next is Fe 3O 4 and last of all Fe 2O 3. Common
names in order are Wustite, Magnetite and Haematite.

6. These oxides are compressed during the rolling operation to produce blue millscale.
7. The thickness of millscale varies from 25 to 100 um. When it has been removed by any
surface preparation method, it can never re-cur.

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