Corrosion of mild steel under anaerobic biofilm
Characklis, William G.
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Corrosion of mild steel under completely anaerobic conditions in the presence of a mixed population biofilm, including sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB), has been studied in a continuous flow system. The closed channel flow reactor was continuously fed with low concentration substrate at different dilution rates that influenced biofilm accumulation. No direct correlation was observed between corrosion and SRB activity in the absence of ferrous iron. Furthermore, corrosion of mild steel in the SRB environment was determined by the nature of the metal and environmental conditions such as dissolved iron concentration. When formation of an iron sulfide film on mild steel was prevented before the biofilm accumulated, the metal surface retained its scratch lines after a 21-day experiment (SRB at 2.6 × 109/cm2). However, when the iron sulfide film was formed before the accumulation of biofilm, visible localized corrosion appeared after 14 days and increased up to 21 days. Intergranular and pitting attack was found in the localized corrosion area. Inclusions (Al, Mn, and Fe) and grain boundary triple points were also found in the localized corrosion area. At high iron concentration (approximately 60 mg/L in the bulk water), all biogenic sulfide was precipitated and corrosion had significantly enhanced. Intergranular attack was found over the entire metal surface.
Lee, W., and W. G. Characklis. “Corrosion of Mild Steel Under Anaerobic Biofilm.” CORROSION 49, no. 3 (March 1993): 186–199. doi:10.5006/1.3316040.