Smart corrosion inhibition strategies: substrate, coating, and inhibitors


Corrosion is a persistent problem for machinery and vehicles constructed out of metals, in particular those comprised of steel or aluminum alloys. The design of metal structures, as to the material and how it interfaces with the environment, plays a large role in the tendency to corrode since corrosion is a surface reaction. Surface composition and morphology, therefore, greatly affect the ability of metal to remain passive or to become corrosively active. Materials design should dictate what surface compositions or morphologies are desired, and supplement the mechanical architecture, to maximize corrosion resistance. For active metal alloys, the currently utilized bulk alloy specifications do not appear sufficient for ensuring a particular corrosion activity. Surface conversion of the metal to either a less active or an actively corrosion-preventing coating may or may not passivate the resulting surface. The application of a coating to a reactive metal surface is commonly utilized to retard or prevent corrosion of the surface, which can provide either passive or smart inhibition of corrosion processes. Smart systems attempt to utilize environmental or behavioral triggers to induce a response in the coating or substrate that changes surface composition to better inhibit corrosion. Design of active coating systems and their mechanisms are reviewed.




Air Force Research Laboratory (Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio). Materials and Manufacturing Directorate
Boeing Company
Deft, Inc.
Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory

Keywords and Phrases

Metals; Vehicles

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





© 2007 Federation of Societies for Coatings Technology, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2007