Corrosion behaviour of copper under biotic and abiotic conditions in anoxic ground water: electrochemical study

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    15 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Finnish nuclear waste disposal program proposes to dispose spent nuclear fuel in tightly sealed copper canisters in a geological repository; here, copper acts as a corrosion barrier. The key argument for such materials selection is that copper is resistant to corrosion in oxygen-free water. However, the presence and colonization of microbial species in ground water in the geological repository may initiate, facilitate and accelerate corrosion of copper under such conditions. In this study, the results from experiments that were designed to simulate the final stage of the deep geological nuclear waste repository, when the temperature has already stabilized to the level of the surrounding bedrock and all oxygen included at the construction stage has been consumed, are reported, both in the presence and absence of micro-organisms retrieved from the repository site. The experiments were performed for 10 months, during which the copper specimens were subjected to electrochemical measurements. After the tests, the specimens were investigated in terms of microstructure and weight changes, while the test media was characterized with respect to selected chemical species. Analysis concentrated on EIS data in the light of results obtained by other methods. In the presence of micro-organisms, e.g., sulphate-reducing bacteria, the development of Cu2S is the primary surface process on copper specimens, with its corrosion protection properties being regulated by the growth of the biofilm. As compared to two-layered Cu2O films that grow on the specimen surfaces in the absence of bacteria, Cu2S films were essentially less susceptible for the attack by Cl-. Under abiotic conditions, passivity breakdown by Cl- resulting in the localized type of attack detected on the surfaces is the probable reason for an essentially higher corrosion rate than in the biotic system.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)350-365
    JournalElectrochimica Acta
    Volume203
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Fingerprint

    Copper
    Groundwater
    Corrosion
    Geological repositories
    Radioactive Waste
    Radioactive wastes
    Bacteria
    Oxygen
    Spent fuels
    Nuclear fuels
    Biofilms
    Corrosion protection
    Corrosion rate
    Waste disposal
    Sulfates
    Experiments
    Microstructure
    Water
    Temperature

    Keywords

    • bacteria
    • copper
    • corrosion
    • electrochemical impedance spectroscopy
    • geological repositories
    • geology
    • groundwater
    • microorganisms
    • radioactive waste disposal
    • radioactive wastes
    • waste disposal
    • construction stages
    • electrochemical measurements
    • electrochemical studies
    • microbially induced corrosions
    • nuclear waste disposal
    • nuclear waste repositories
    • passivity breakdown
    • sulphate-reducing bacteria

    Cite this

    @article{8e320b71664f4529b2ccc079c0b67edc,
    title = "Corrosion behaviour of copper under biotic and abiotic conditions in anoxic ground water: electrochemical study",
    abstract = "Finnish nuclear waste disposal program proposes to dispose spent nuclear fuel in tightly sealed copper canisters in a geological repository; here, copper acts as a corrosion barrier. The key argument for such materials selection is that copper is resistant to corrosion in oxygen-free water. However, the presence and colonization of microbial species in ground water in the geological repository may initiate, facilitate and accelerate corrosion of copper under such conditions. In this study, the results from experiments that were designed to simulate the final stage of the deep geological nuclear waste repository, when the temperature has already stabilized to the level of the surrounding bedrock and all oxygen included at the construction stage has been consumed, are reported, both in the presence and absence of micro-organisms retrieved from the repository site. The experiments were performed for 10 months, during which the copper specimens were subjected to electrochemical measurements. After the tests, the specimens were investigated in terms of microstructure and weight changes, while the test media was characterized with respect to selected chemical species. Analysis concentrated on EIS data in the light of results obtained by other methods. In the presence of micro-organisms, e.g., sulphate-reducing bacteria, the development of Cu2S is the primary surface process on copper specimens, with its corrosion protection properties being regulated by the growth of the biofilm. As compared to two-layered Cu2O films that grow on the specimen surfaces in the absence of bacteria, Cu2S films were essentially less susceptible for the attack by Cl-. Under abiotic conditions, passivity breakdown by Cl- resulting in the localized type of attack detected on the surfaces is the probable reason for an essentially higher corrosion rate than in the biotic system.",
    keywords = "bacteria, copper, corrosion, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, geological repositories, geology, groundwater, microorganisms, radioactive waste disposal, radioactive wastes, waste disposal, construction stages, electrochemical measurements, electrochemical studies, microbially induced corrosions, nuclear waste disposal, nuclear waste repositories, passivity breakdown, sulphate-reducing bacteria",
    author = "Elina Huttunen-Saarivirta and Pauliina Rajala and Carp{\'e}n, {Leena I.}",
    year = "2016",
    doi = "10.1016/j.electacta.2016.01.098",
    language = "English",
    volume = "203",
    pages = "350--365",
    journal = "Electrochimica Acta",
    issn = "0013-4686",
    publisher = "Elsevier",

    }

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Corrosion behaviour of copper under biotic and abiotic conditions in anoxic ground water

    T2 - electrochemical study

    AU - Huttunen-Saarivirta, Elina

    AU - Rajala, Pauliina

    AU - Carpén, Leena I.

    PY - 2016

    Y1 - 2016

    N2 - Finnish nuclear waste disposal program proposes to dispose spent nuclear fuel in tightly sealed copper canisters in a geological repository; here, copper acts as a corrosion barrier. The key argument for such materials selection is that copper is resistant to corrosion in oxygen-free water. However, the presence and colonization of microbial species in ground water in the geological repository may initiate, facilitate and accelerate corrosion of copper under such conditions. In this study, the results from experiments that were designed to simulate the final stage of the deep geological nuclear waste repository, when the temperature has already stabilized to the level of the surrounding bedrock and all oxygen included at the construction stage has been consumed, are reported, both in the presence and absence of micro-organisms retrieved from the repository site. The experiments were performed for 10 months, during which the copper specimens were subjected to electrochemical measurements. After the tests, the specimens were investigated in terms of microstructure and weight changes, while the test media was characterized with respect to selected chemical species. Analysis concentrated on EIS data in the light of results obtained by other methods. In the presence of micro-organisms, e.g., sulphate-reducing bacteria, the development of Cu2S is the primary surface process on copper specimens, with its corrosion protection properties being regulated by the growth of the biofilm. As compared to two-layered Cu2O films that grow on the specimen surfaces in the absence of bacteria, Cu2S films were essentially less susceptible for the attack by Cl-. Under abiotic conditions, passivity breakdown by Cl- resulting in the localized type of attack detected on the surfaces is the probable reason for an essentially higher corrosion rate than in the biotic system.

    AB - Finnish nuclear waste disposal program proposes to dispose spent nuclear fuel in tightly sealed copper canisters in a geological repository; here, copper acts as a corrosion barrier. The key argument for such materials selection is that copper is resistant to corrosion in oxygen-free water. However, the presence and colonization of microbial species in ground water in the geological repository may initiate, facilitate and accelerate corrosion of copper under such conditions. In this study, the results from experiments that were designed to simulate the final stage of the deep geological nuclear waste repository, when the temperature has already stabilized to the level of the surrounding bedrock and all oxygen included at the construction stage has been consumed, are reported, both in the presence and absence of micro-organisms retrieved from the repository site. The experiments were performed for 10 months, during which the copper specimens were subjected to electrochemical measurements. After the tests, the specimens were investigated in terms of microstructure and weight changes, while the test media was characterized with respect to selected chemical species. Analysis concentrated on EIS data in the light of results obtained by other methods. In the presence of micro-organisms, e.g., sulphate-reducing bacteria, the development of Cu2S is the primary surface process on copper specimens, with its corrosion protection properties being regulated by the growth of the biofilm. As compared to two-layered Cu2O films that grow on the specimen surfaces in the absence of bacteria, Cu2S films were essentially less susceptible for the attack by Cl-. Under abiotic conditions, passivity breakdown by Cl- resulting in the localized type of attack detected on the surfaces is the probable reason for an essentially higher corrosion rate than in the biotic system.

    KW - bacteria

    KW - copper

    KW - corrosion

    KW - electrochemical impedance spectroscopy

    KW - geological repositories

    KW - geology

    KW - groundwater

    KW - microorganisms

    KW - radioactive waste disposal

    KW - radioactive wastes

    KW - waste disposal

    KW - construction stages

    KW - electrochemical measurements

    KW - electrochemical studies

    KW - microbially induced corrosions

    KW - nuclear waste disposal

    KW - nuclear waste repositories

    KW - passivity breakdown

    KW - sulphate-reducing bacteria

    U2 - 10.1016/j.electacta.2016.01.098

    DO - 10.1016/j.electacta.2016.01.098

    M3 - Article

    VL - 203

    SP - 350

    EP - 365

    JO - Electrochimica Acta

    JF - Electrochimica Acta

    SN - 0013-4686

    ER -