Corrosion of Stainless Steels S31603, S31655, and S32101 in Sulfuric Acid Solutions: Effects of Concentration, Chlorides, and Temperature

E. Huttunen-Saarivirta, E. Isotahdon, M. Lindgren, A. Mardoukhi, P. Mocnik, T. Kosec, J. B. Jorcin, S. Hägg Mameng, Y. El Ouazari, L. Wegrelius

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study investigates the corrosion behavior of three stainless steel grades at two H2SO4 concentrations, namely 1 wt% and 10 wt%, with varying NaCl concentrations in the range from 500 mg/L to 10,000 mg/L. Dissociation of sulfuric acid yields the hydrogen (H+) and sulfate (SO24-) ions, the former of which lowers the pH value of a solution while the latter increases the concentration of sulfate ions that act as a corrosion inhibitor. The equilibrium chemistry of the solutions was defined at the test temperatures of 22°C, 50°C, 90°C, and 130°C, and correlated with the observations on the electrochemical and microstructural examination of the materials. The results showed clear differences in the main corrosion form between the two H2SO4 concentrations. In 1 wt% H2SO4, pitting was the major form of corrosion attack in the presence of chlorides, whereas uniform corrosion dominated in 10 wt% H2SO4. The pitting corrosion tendency for the three stainless steel grades under various test conditions was consistent, but there were differences in their resistance to uniform corrosion. The chloride-to-sulfate activity ratio, a(Cl-)=a(SO24-), was found to be the key parameter in defining the occurrence of pitting corrosion for all three alloys. In H2SO4-NaCl systems, no pitting occurred at the activity ratio a(Cl-)=a(SO24-) below 10, with higher values inducing pitting attack, particularly in 1 wt% H2SO4. The described novel results are presented and discussed in this paper.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)943-962
Number of pages20
JournalCorrosion
Volume78
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • chloride
  • pitting
  • stainless steel
  • sulfate
  • sulfuric acid
  • uniform corrosion

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