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Stainless steel ennoblement in freshwater: From exposure tests to mechanisms

Abstract : This work confirms the systematic character of the open circuit potential (OCP) ennoblement for stainless steels immersed in natural freshwater, and highlights the mechanism(s) responsible for this evolution. To achieve these results, electrochemical measurements and analysis/observations of the surface were realized in situ during exposure tests in the river Seine on two exposition sites using an original immersion device. Electrochemical results show that on both immersion sites a new oxidizing compound is produced close to the surface and that its reduction, occurring at potentials higher than the initial OCP value, leads systematically to the ennoblement phenomenon. Surface analysis, electrochemical and chemical tests show that the oxidizing compound is not the same on both sites: on one site hydrogen peroxide is produced within the biofilm, while on the second one oxidized manganese is deposited on the surface. Thus the two mechanisms mentioned in the literature can occur on stainless steels immersed in the same water and lead to similar evolutions of the electrochemical behaviour. These two mechanisms are not specific of a type of water and seem to be complementary rather than opposed. They are both based on enzymatic processes.
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https://hal-centralesupelec.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01247960
Contributor : Catherine Kruch <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, December 23, 2015 - 11:06:14 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, July 1, 2020 - 4:30:04 PM

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Cyril Marconnet, Catherine Dagbert, Marc Roy, Damien Féron. Stainless steel ennoblement in freshwater: From exposure tests to mechanisms. Corrosion Engineering, Science and Technology, Maney Publishing, 2008, 50 (8), pp.2342-2352. ⟨10.1016/j.corsci.2008.05.007⟩. ⟨hal-01247960⟩

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