Corrosion behaviour of three commercial sintered Nd–Fe–B magnets exposed to environments containing water as vapour, pressurised vapour, and liquid was investigated in order to understand their overall corrosion performance under a range of conditions. Two types of heat humidity exposure tests, namely the 85/85 and pressure cooker test, and the immersion test combined with electrochemical measurements were used as corrosion tests. It was observed that varying the temperature, pressure, and the prevailing state of water in the exposure tests, different corrosion mechanisms were detected on the surface of Nd–Fe–B magnets. The surface finish of the magnet had an effect on the initiation of corrosion in mild heat-humidity exposure. Immersion in liquid water resulted in a corrosion topography where the Nd-rich grain-boundary phase did not corrode selectively as in the other accelerated corrosion tests but was retained intact while the matrix phase underwent corrosion. These results and the dominant corrosion mechanisms of sintered Nd–Fe–B magnets in different environments are presented and discussed in this paper.
- electrochemical impedance spectroscopy
- permanent magnets
- rare earth alloys
- rare earth compounds
- scanning electron microscopy