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Localized Corrosion of Aluminum Alloy 5052 for Desalination Service

Seawater desalination with waste heat from nuclear or fossil power plants is an attractive alternative for the production of potable water.1 Multi-effect desalination process (MED) relies on the evaporation of water from a thin film of seawater.2 The heat of condensation is used in the evaporation of water from a subsequent film of seawater.

Product Number: 51317--9151-SG
ISBN: 9151 2017 CP
Author: Mariano Kappes
Publication Date: 2017
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Aluminum alloys in the 3000 5000 and 6000 series present good corrosion resistance in seawater at temperatures up to 125ºC. In particular aluminum alloyAA 5052 (UNS A95052) results very attractive for desalination applications since its initial and maintenance costs are low. From an operational point of view crevice corrosion is a concern for the integrity of the aluminum evaporators due to the presence of rubber gaskets.The repassivation pitting potential ERP and the corrosion potential ECORR of AA 5052 were measured in deaerated 50000 ppm sodium chloride solutions at room temperature and at 90ºC. ERP was higher that ECORR at both temperatures in accord with results available in the literature. While those results predict absence of pitting corrosion in service no systematic studies of crevice corrosion at high temperature are available in the literature. Experience with other alloys predicts that the crevice repassivation potential is lower than ERP so a conservative evaluation of suitability of this alloy for desalination service from a corrosion perspective requires crevice corrosion measurements. Those measurements were performed with an artificial crevice former in sodium chloride solutions at room temperature and at 90ºC.

Keywords: aluminium alloys, crevice corrosion, pitting corrosion, repassivation potential

Aluminum alloys in the 3000 5000 and 6000 series present good corrosion resistance in seawater at temperatures up to 125ºC. In particular aluminum alloyAA 5052 (UNS A95052) results very attractive for desalination applications since its initial and maintenance costs are low. From an operational point of view crevice corrosion is a concern for the integrity of the aluminum evaporators due to the presence of rubber gaskets.The repassivation pitting potential ERP and the corrosion potential ECORR of AA 5052 were measured in deaerated 50000 ppm sodium chloride solutions at room temperature and at 90ºC. ERP was higher that ECORR at both temperatures in accord with results available in the literature. While those results predict absence of pitting corrosion in service no systematic studies of crevice corrosion at high temperature are available in the literature. Experience with other alloys predicts that the crevice repassivation potential is lower than ERP so a conservative evaluation of suitability of this alloy for desalination service from a corrosion perspective requires crevice corrosion measurements. Those measurements were performed with an artificial crevice former in sodium chloride solutions at room temperature and at 90ºC.

Keywords: aluminium alloys, crevice corrosion, pitting corrosion, repassivation potential

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