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Corrosion Under Insulation Behavior Of Phenolic Epoxy Coatings Under Contacting And Contact-Free Insulations

CUI (Corrosion under insulation) refers to localized corrosion under thermal insulations, which pose integrity risks to the hydrocarbon facilities. 1 CUI is reportedly a driver behind 40-60% of failures in the facility piping. Smaller-sized piping (i.e., diameter < 4”) are even more prone to CUI, whereas reportedly 81% of failures in small-sized piping are due to CUI. 2 CUI-related failures and associated efforts comprise 10% of a facility’s maintenance budget. Management of CUI risks has always been challenging as it involves maneuvering numerous governing factors. The key driving factor behind CUI is the aerated moisture that comes from soaked thermal insulations.

Product Number: 51322-17535-SG
Author: Ahmad Raza Khan Rana, Graham Brigham, Omar Chaar, George Jarjoura
Publication Date: 2022
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CUI (corrosion under insulation) is reportedly a contributor to the failure of insulated piping and process equipment. Protective coatings are among various effective measures to manage the CUI of industrial assets. Phenolic epoxy is among the widely used coatings under thermal insulations. This research work involves CUI testing of phenolic epoxy coating for 192 hours as per applicable ASTM standard G189-07 using cyclic wet operating conditions. The resulting weight loss from the test was converted to corrosion rate followed by microscopic checks. The as-coated (i.e., new) surface and post-test coatings were characterized using microscope and surface topography to account for damage modes and surface roughness. Phenolic epoxy coating under contacting insulation suffered a higher material loss rate, dis-bonding, and holiday defects tendency in comparison to contact-free insulation with low-point drainage.

CUI (corrosion under insulation) is reportedly a contributor to the failure of insulated piping and process equipment. Protective coatings are among various effective measures to manage the CUI of industrial assets. Phenolic epoxy is among the widely used coatings under thermal insulations. This research work involves CUI testing of phenolic epoxy coating for 192 hours as per applicable ASTM standard G189-07 using cyclic wet operating conditions. The resulting weight loss from the test was converted to corrosion rate followed by microscopic checks. The as-coated (i.e., new) surface and post-test coatings were characterized using microscope and surface topography to account for damage modes and surface roughness. Phenolic epoxy coating under contacting insulation suffered a higher material loss rate, dis-bonding, and holiday defects tendency in comparison to contact-free insulation with low-point drainage.

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