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Environmentally friendly corrosion protection shows its effect by simple spraying

Materials researchers from Saarbruecken developed a new composite material, which prevents corrosion of metals even under extreme conditions in an environmentally friendly way.

It can be used, wherever metals are exposed to strong weather conditions, aggressive gases, salty media, extensive wear and tear or high pressure. From 23 to 27 April 2012, researchers of INM — Leibniz Institute for New Materials present their results at the leading trade fair "Research and Technology" in Hall 2 at the stand C54.

corrosion protection
Foto: Uwe Bellhäuser

"This patented composite shows its effect by simple spraying", explains Carsten Becker-Willinger, head of the program division "Nanomere". "What makes this coating so special is its structuring: The protective particles arrange themselves like roof-tiles. Similar to a wall, several layers of particles arrange themselves in a staggered pattern on top of each other, resulting in a self-organized, highly structured barrier", says the expert for chemical nanotechnology.

The protective coating is only a few millimeters thick and prevents the penetration of gases and electrolytes. It protects from corrosion caused by aggressive aqueous solutions, such as salty solutions (e.g. splash water containing road salt or sea water) or aqueous acids (e.g. acid rain). The protective coating is also an effective barrier against corrosive gases or under pressure.

After thermal curing, the composite adheres on metallic substrate, it is abrasion- and impact-resistant. For this purpose, it also withstands a highly mechanical load: The coating passes the ball-drop test with a 1.5 kg semi-spherical steel ball, which is dropped from a height of 1 metre without causing parts to chip off or the coating to crack. Only light deformation is shown. Thus, the new material can also be used with sand or mineral dust without wear and tear.

The composite can be deposited by spraying or with other wet-chemical processes and cured at temperatures from 150 to 200°C. It is suitable for steel, metal alloys or copper. Panels, tubes, cogwheels, tools or engine parts in any shape can be coated. The special mixture consists of a solvent, a binder and nanoscale platelet-like particles, but no chrome VI or other heavy metals.

Dr. Carsten Becker-Willinger
Program Division „Nanomere“
INM – Leibniz-Institut für Neue Materialien
Phone: +49 681 9300 196
INM, situated in Saarbruecken/Germany, is an internationally leading research centre for innovative materials. Specialised in the three research fields of Chemical Nanotechnology, Interface Materials and Materials in Biology, the institute provides research and development from molecule to pilot production delivered by a highly skilled team of chemists, physicists, biologists, materials and engineering scientists. It cooperates with national and international institutes and develops materials with tailor-made properties for companies throughout the world. INM is an institute of the Scientific Association Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz and employs around 190 collaborators.

Dr. Carola Jung | idw
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