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Mechanistic insights of dissolution and mechanical breakdown of FeCO3 corrosion films

DOI: 10.1021/acsami.0c18976 DOI Help

Authors: Adriana Matamoros-Veloza (University of Leeds) , Richard Barker (University of Leeds) , Silvia Vargas (BP America, Inc) , Anne Neville (University of Leeds)
Co-authored by industrial partner: Yes

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Acs Applied Materials & Interfaces

State: Published (Approved)
Published: January 2021
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 21717

Abstract: Carbon steel is a universally used material in various transportation and construction industries. Research related to CO2 corrosion environments agrees on the occurrence of siderite (FeCO3) as a main product conforming corrosion films, suggested to impart protection to carbon steel. Identifying and understanding the presence of all corrosion products under certain conditions is of greatest importance to elucidate the behavior of corrosion films under operation conditions (e.g., flow, pH, temperature), but information regarding the nature and formation of other Fe corrosion products apart from FeCO3 is lacking. Corrosion products in CO2 environments typically consist of common Fe minerals that in nature have been demonstrated to undergo transformations, forming other Fe phases. This fact of nature has not been yet explored in the corrosion science field, which can help us to describe mechanisms associated with industrial processes. In this work, we present a multiscale and multidisciplinary approach to understand the mechanisms occurring on corrosion films under the key factors of flow and pH through the combination of molecular techniques with imaging. We report that certainly siderite (FeCO3, cylindrical with trigonal-pyramidal caps) is the main product identified under the conditions used (representative of brine transport at 80 °C), but wustite (FeO) and magnetite (Fe3O4) minerals also form, likely from the de-carbonation of FeCO3 → FeO → Fe3O4, depending on pH under the action of flow. These minerals exist across the corrosion films evidencing a more complex nature of the three-dimensional layer not currently accounted for in the mechanistic models. A relatively low flow velocity (1 m/s), as recognized for industrial operations, is enough to produce chemo-mechanical damage to the FeCO3 crystals, causing breakage at low pH where dissolution of FeCO3 occurs with a rapid crystal size reduction of the cylindrical FeCO3 geometry of ∼80% in just 8 h, changing also the local chemical structure of Fe3C under the film. Similarly, a flow velocity of 1 m/s is capable of inducing crystal removal at neutral pH, promoting further degradation of the steel, compromising the protectiveness assumption of FeCO3 corrosion films. The chemo-mechanical damage and Fe phase transformations will affect the critical localized corrosion, and therefore, they need to be accounted for in mechanistic models aiming to find new avenues for control and mitigation of carbon steel corrosion.

Journal Keywords: pH; flow velocity; flow cell; film dissolution; mechanical damage; localized corrosion

Subject Areas: Materials, Chemistry

Instruments: I18-Microfocus Spectroscopy

Added On: 25/01/2021 09:02

Discipline Tags:

Earth Sciences & Environment Materials Engineering & Processes Physical Chemistry Chemistry Corrosion Materials Science Engineering & Technology

Technical Tags:

Spectroscopy X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy (XAS) X-ray Absorption Near Edge Structure (XANES)