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DETECTING SUSCEPTIBILITY TO INTERGRANULAR CORROSION

SEMINAR ON:

DETECTING SUSCEPTIBILITY TO INTERGRANULAR CORROSION


PREPARED BY:
NAME: NASHIKKAR TRUSHIT K. ROLL NO. : 913 B.E. III METALLURGICAL AND MATERIALS ENGINEERING FACULTY OF TECHNOLOGY AND ENGINEERING M. S. UNIVERSITY VADODARA NOVEMBER 2011

LAYOUT

INTRODUCTION TO INTERGRANULAR CORROSION MECHANISM KNIFELINE ATTACK EXFOLIATION CORROSION LAMELLAR CORROSION SENSITIZATION EFFECT REFERENCES

INTRODUCTION
INTERGRANULAR CORROSION

MICROSTRUCTURE OF METALS AND ALLOYS:

DEFINITION:

-Intergranular corrosion is a localized attack along the grain boundaries or immediately adjacent to the grain boundaries, while bulk of the grains remain largely unaffected. -It is associated with chemical segregation effects or specific phases precipitated along the grain boundaries. -Such precipitation produces zones of reduced corrosion resistance in the immediate vicinity.

Microscope view of a polished cross section of a material attacked by intergranular corrosion

MECHANISM

What causes intergranular corrosion?


-Local differences in composition such as coring (alloy castings). -e.g. chromium carbide precipitation at the grain boundaries in stainless steel. (cause) -Consumption of chromium from a narrow band along the grain boundary so this zone becomes anodic w.r.t. the unaffected grains. (effect) -Hence this chromium depleted zone becomes a preferential path for corrosion attack and crack propogation if under the tensile stress.

CHROMIUM PROFILE ACROSS GRAIN:

In nickel alloys and austenitic stainless steels, chromium is added for corrosion resistance. Around 12% chromium is minimally required to ensure passivation, mechanism by which a thin invisible layer forms at the surface of stainless steels. This layer protects the metal from corrosive environments and it is thus stainless.

But here the mechanism involved is formation of chromium carbide at the grain boundaries, forming chromium depleted zones and so intergranular corrosion occurs.

Selective leaching often involve grain boundary depletion mechanisms. These zones also act as local galvanic couples, causing local galvanic corrosion.

This condition happens when the material is heated to temperature around 700C for too long time, and often happens during welding or an improper heat treatment.
When zones of such material form due to welding, the resulting corrosion is termed weld decay.

Figure : Intergranular corrosion of a failed aircraft component made of 7075-T6 aluminum

Many aluminum base alloys are susceptible to intergranular corrosion on account of either phases anodic to aluminum being present along grain boundaries or due to depleted zones of copper adjacent to grain boundaries in coppercontaining alloys. Intergranular corrosion is a concern especially for alloys with high content of copper.

Copper-based alloys become sensitive when depletion of copper content in the grain boundaries occurs.

Anisotropic alloys, where extrusion or heavy working leads to formation of long, flat grains, are especially prone to intergranular corrosion. Intergranular corrosion induced by environmental stresses is termed as stress corrosion cracking. Intergranular corrosion can be detected by ultrasonic and eddy current methods.

KNIFELINE ATTACK

Knifeline attack impacts steels stabilized by niobium, such as 347 stainless steel. Titanium, niobium, and their carbides dissolve in steel at very high temperatures.

At some cooling regimes, niobium carbide does not precipitate, and the steel then behaves like unstabilized steel, forming chromium carbide instead.
This affects only a thin zone several millimeters wide in the very vicinity of the weld, making it difficult to spot and increasing the corrosion speed.

EXFOLIATION CORROSION

High strength aluminium alloys, especially when extruded or otherwise subjected to high degree of working, can undergo exfoliation corrosion. Here the corrosion products build up between the flat, elongated grains and separate them, resulting in lifting or leafing effect and often propagating from edges of the material through its entire structure.

LAMELLAR CORROSION

The sensitivity of cupronickel alloy increases together with its nickel content. A broader term for this class of corrosion is lamellar corrosion. Alloys of iron are susceptible to lamellar corrosion, as the volume of iron oxides is about seven times higher than the volume of original metal, leading to formation of internal tensile stresses tearing the material apart.

Similar effect leads to formation of lamellae in stainless steels, due to the difference of thermal expansion of the oxides and the metal.

SENSITIZATION EFFECT
Sensitization of metals involves the creation of galvanic corrosion cells within the microstructure of an alloy. Certain alloys when exposed to a temperature characterized as a sensitizing temperature become particularly susceptible to intergranular corrosion. In a corrosive atmosphere, the grain interfaces of these sensitized alloys become very reactive and intergranular corrosion results. This is characterized by a localized attack at an adjacent to grain boundaries with relatively little corrosion of the grains themselves.

The alloy disintegrates (grains fall out) and/or loses its strength. Intergranular corrosion is generally considered to be caused by the segregation of impurities at the grain boundaries or by enrichment or depletion of one of the alloying elements in the grain boundary areas. Thus in certain aluminium alloys, small amounts of iron have been shown to segregate in the grain boundaries and cause intergranular corrosion. Also, it has been shown that the zinc content of a brass is higher at the grain boundaries and subject to such corrosion.

High-strength aluminium alloys such as the Duralumin type alloys (Al-Cu) which depend upon precipitated phases for strengthening are susceptible to intergranular corrosion following sensitization at temperatures of about 120C. Nickel-rich alloys such as Inconel 600 and Incoloy 800 show similar susceptibility. Die-cast zinc alloys containing aluminum exhibit intergranular corrosion by steam in a marine atmosphere. Cr-Mn and Cr-Mn-Ni steels are also susceptible to intergranular corrosion following sensitization in the temperature range of 400-850C.

In the case of the austenitic stainless steels, when these steels are sensitized by being heated in the temperature range of about 500 to 800C, depletion of chromium in the grain boundary region occurs, resulting in susceptibility to intergranular corrosion. Such sensitization of austenitic stainless steels can readily occur because of temperature service requirements, as in steam generators, or as a result of subsequent welding of the formed structure.

The photos above show the microstructure of a type 304 stainless steel. The figure on the left is the normalized microstructure and the one on the right is the sensitized structure and is susceptible to intergranular corrosion or intergranular stress corrosion cracking.

REFERENCES

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intergranular_corrosion corrosion-doctors.org/FormsIntergranular/intergranular.htm

www.corrosionclinic.com