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Protection of Aluminum Alloy (AA7075) from Corrosion

by Sol-Gel Technique
von der Fakultt fr Naturwissenschaften der Technischen Universitt
Chemnitz genehmigte Dissertation zur Erlangung des akademischen Grades

doctor rerum naturalium


(Dr. rer. nat.)

vorgelegt von
M.Sc. Ahmed Younis
geboren am 01.03.1979 in Kairo, gypten
eingereicht am 30.08.2011
Gutachter: Prof. Dr. Rudolf Holze
Prof. Dr. Thomas Lampke

Tag der Verteidigung: 24.01.2012

http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:bsz:ch1-qucosa-83230

Bibliographische Beschreibung und Referat


Ahmed Younis
Protection of Aluminum Alloy (AA7075) from Corrosion by Sol-Gel Technique

Die vorliegende Arbeit beschftigt sich mit der Entwicklung von Sol-Gel-Beschichtungen
durch Optimierung der Ausgangszusammensetzung und der Applikations-Parameter fr
den Korrosionsschutz der Aluminium-Legierung AA7075. Verschiedene Arten von
Silanen, z. B. Tetraethoxysilan (TEOS), Phenyltriethoxysilan (PTES) und Phenyltrimethoxysilan (PTMS) sind verglichen worden: Der Sol-Gel-Film aus PTMS prpariert, weist
dabei die hchste Hydrophobizitt auf, was sich insbesondere in den Barriere-Eigenschaften
dieser Verbindung zeigte. Die Wirkung von Essigsure als Katalysator in Sol-GelProzessen wurden untersucht, um die optimale Katalysatorkonzentration fr den
Korrosionsschutz der beschichteten Proben zu ermitteln. Die Korrosionsbestndigkeit der
beschichteten Proben sinkt bei hheren Konzentrationen des sauren Katalysators durch die
Auflsung des Aluminiumoxids an der Substratoberflche. Allerdings fhrten zu niedrige
Konzentrationen des Katalysators zur Verlangsamung der Hydrolysereaktionen der Silane
und es bildete sich porse Sol-Gel-Schichten. Die Wrmebehandlung der beschichteten
Aluminium-Proben ist fr die Vernetzung des Films erforderlich. Eine Wrmebehandlung
bei 300 C fr 2,5 Stunden ergab dabei den besten Korrosionsschutz. Hhere Temperaturen
fhrten zu einer Verschlechterung der Eigenschaften der Filme, was mit der Zerstrung des
organischen Teil des Films erklrt werden kann. Darber hinaus verursachen zu niedrige
Temperaturen einen geringeren Korrosionsschutz der beschichteten Aluminium-Proben.
Vermutlich ist die geringe Vernetzung des Sol-Gel-Films bei Temperaturen was fr als
300 C verantwortlich. Die beschichteten Aluminium-Proben wuden mittels RasterElektronenmikroskopie (SEM), Energiedispersive Rntgenspektroskopie (EDX), RntgenPhotoelektronenspektroskopie (XPS) und elektrochemischen Techniken charakterisiert.

Schlsselwrter: Aluminium-Legierung; Sol-Gel-Film; Sol-Zusammensetzung; Wrmebehandlung; Konzentration des Katalysators; elektrochemische Messungen.

Abstract
A.A. Younis
Protection of Aluminum Alloy (AA7075) from Corrosion by Sol-Gel Technique
The present work pertains to the development of sol-gel coatings by optimizing the
composition and the application parameters for corrosion protection of aluminum alloy
AA7075. Different kinds of silanes e.g. tetraethoxysilane (TEOS), phenyltriethoxysilane
(PTES) and phenyltrimethoxysilane (PTMS) have been compared: the sol-gel film
prepared from PTMS shows highest hydrophobicity manifested by the best barrier property
of this compound. The effect of acetic acid as a catalyst on the chemistry of the sol is
investigated in order to estimate the best catalyst concentration for better corrosion
protection of the coated samples. The corrosion resistance of the coated samples is found to
be decreasing at higher concentrations of the catalyst due to the dissolution of the
aluminum oxide at the substrate surface in the acid sol. However, lower concentrations of
the catalyst lead to low hydrolysis reactions of the silanes and non-dense sol-gel films have
been formed. The heat treatment of the coated aluminum samples is required for crosslinking of the film. The heat treatment at 300 C for 2.5 hours exhibits the best corrosion
protection. Higher treatment-temperatures lead to degradation of the properties of the film
which can be described in terms of destroying the organic part of the film. Moreover, low
treatment-temperatures cause low corrosion protection of the coated aluminum samples
which is presumably attributed to the low cross-linking of the sol-gel film at temperatures
less than 300 C. The coated aluminum samples are characterized by scanning electron
microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), X-ray photoelectron
spectroscopy (XPS) and electrochemical techniques.
Keywords: Aluminum alloy; sol-gel film; sol composition; heat treatment; concentration of
the catalyst; electrochemical measurements.
3

Die vorliegende Arbeit wurde in des Zeit von Januar 2008 bis November 2011 angefertigt.
Sie entstand unter der Leitung von Herrn Prof. Dr. W. Ensinger (TU-Darmstdt) und Herrn
Prof. Dr. Rudolf Holze (TU-Chemnitz).

Acknowledgements
First and foremost I offer my thanks, obedience, and gratitude to God from whom I
received guide and inspiration.
I would like to express my gratitude to my supervisor Prof. Dr. Rudolf Holze (TUChemnitz) whose expertise, valuable suggestions, comments, guidance and patience added
considerably to my knowledge. I deeply appreciate his vast knowledge in the field of
electrochemistry.
I would like to thank Prof. Thomas Lampke (TU-Chemnitz) for accepting to be the second
referee of this work.
I am deeply grateful to Prof. Dr. Karl Heinz Hoffmann and Prof. Dr. K. Banert (TUChemnitz) for a guide and supporting me in my thesis.
I also wish to thank Prof. Dr. W. Ensinger (TU-Darmstadt) who gave me a chance to do
more experimental in his corrosion Lab.
I would like to thank several people without whom this research would have been
extremely difficult. Generally, I wish to give my grateful acknowledgements to all the
members of the institute of chemistry, Chemnitz University of Technology, who provide a
pleasant atmosphere where I spent one year of my happy time.
I wish to express my appreciation to the love and good wishes extended by Pro. Dr. AbdelRahman and Prof. Dr. M.M.El-sabbah (Al-Azhar University), Prof. Dr. Alia Eldamati,
Prof. Dr. Mohamed Nour and Prof. Dr. Mohamed Hassan (National Institute for
Standards), Prof. Dr. Ahmed Hashem (National Research Center) and Prof. Dr. Abdel
Salam Makhlouf (Central Metallurgical Research & Development Institute) my Egyptian
professors who initially introduced me to the field of corrosion and discuss any problem
related to researching work.
My biggest and deepest gratitude goes to my mother for her constant inspiration, support
and encouragement. I would like to express my gratitude to my brothers and sister whom
their supports helped me along the way.
My sincere thanks with extreme love go to my children who were a great source of
motivation to finish this work in a short time. I am greatly indebted to the parents, brothers
and sister of my wife for their love, affection and prayers.
5

This dissertation is
dedicated to my dear
parents, wife, lovely son,
daughters, and my
brothers, for their love,
caring, and supports me
through the last years.

List of Abbreviation and Symbols


AFM

Atomic force microscopy

Cell potential (V)

Standard electrode potential (V)

Faraday constant

FTIR

Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy

Gibbs free energy

G0

Standard free energy

jdiss

Dissolution current density (A/cm2)

jcorr

Corrosion current (A)

Ecorr

Corrosion potential (V)

(1) Resistance; (2) Gas constant 8.314 J/Kmol

RE

Reference electrode

SEM

Scanning electron microscopy

Temperature (K)

Time

XPS

X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy

TEOS

Tetraethoxysilane

PTES

Phenyltriethoxysilane

PTMS

Phenyltrimethoxysilane

Overvoltage (Overpotential)

DCP

Direct current polarization

AcAc

Acetic Acid

A. Acetone Acetylacetone
WE

Working electrode

Volt

Fig.

Figure

Rp

Polarization resistance

OCP

Open circuit potential

IGC

Intergranular corrosion

Contact angle measurement

SIMS

Secondary ion mass spectroscopy

OM

Optical microscopy

EDS

Energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy

Charge transfer barrier for anodic or cathodic reaction

CR

Corrosion rate

Ra

Average roughness

RMS

Root mean square roughness

Table of Contents
Bibliographische Beschreibung und Referat:.................................................................. 2
Abstract:....... 3
Zeitraum, Ort der Durchfhrung: .... 4
Acknowledgments: ..... 5
Dedication:... 6
List of Abbreviation and Symbol:.... 7
Table of Contents:........ 9
Chapter I:........ 13
Introduction:..... 13
1.1 Literature Reviews:........ 13
1.1.1 Protection of pure aluminum from corrosion:...... 13
1.1.2 Protection of aluminum alloy from corrosion:.......... 14
1.2 Sol-Gel process:......... 15
1.3 Application of sol-gel process:...... 18
1.3.1 Spin coating:..... 18
1.3.2 Dip coating:....... 20
1.4 Corrosion and types of corrosion:.......... 21
1.4.1 Corrosion:......... 21
1.4.2 Electrochemical reactions in aluminum corrosion:... 22
1.4.3 Aluminum as a passive metal:...... 23
1.4.4 Forms of corrosion:....... 25
1.4.4.1 Uniform corrosion:.... 25
1.4.4.2 Galvanic corrosion:....... 25
1.4.4.3 Pitting corrosion:... 27
9

1.4.4.4 Crevice corrosion:. 30


1.4.4.5 Intergranular corrosion (IGC):...... 31
1.5 Thermodynamics:.. 32
1.5.1 Pourbaix diagram (potential-pH diagram):... 32
1.5.2 Gibbs free energy (G): 35
1.5.3 Nernst equation:................ 36
1.6 Kinetic aspects of corrosion process:......... 37
1.6.1 Overpotential ():.. 37
1.6.2 Concentration polarization:........................... 38
1.6.3 Butler-Volmer equation:........... 40
1.7 Aim of the work:.... 41
Chapter II:...... 43
2. Experimental:....... 43
2.1 Sample preparation:... 43
2.1.1 Polishing process:. 43
2.1.2 Sol preparation: ....... 43
2.2 Electrochemical measurements:........ 44
2.2.1 Porosity determination:........ 46
2.3 Linear polarization resistance (Rp):............... 46
2.4 Determination of the film thickness by DekTak D8000:.. 47
2.5 Weight loss measurement:..... 49
2.6 Analytical techniques:............ 49
2.6.1 Scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy
(SEM/EDX):............ 49
2.6.2 Infrared spectroscopy (IR):.......... 51

10

2.6.3 Atomic force microscopy (AFM):... 53


2.6.4 Contact angle () measurement:...... 54
2.6.5 Secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS):..... 55
2.6.6 X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS):........... 56
2.6.7 Optical microscopy (OM):.......... 57
Chapter III:.... 58
3. Results:............. 58
3.1 Study of the effect of PTMS coating on aluminum alloy:............. 58
3.1.1 Optimization of PTMS sol solution:......... 58
3.1.1.1 Study of the effect of Acetic Acid (AcAc):............ 58
3.1.1.2 Study of the effect of Acetylacetone (A. Acetone):........... 60
3.1.1.3 Study of the effect of water-propanol:........ 61
3.1.1.4 Study of the effect of heating temperature:................................................ 62
3.1.1.5 Film thickness and spin coating:..... 64
3.1.1.6 Film thickness and heat treatment:............. 65
3.1.2 Potentiodynamic tests:.......... 66
3.1.2.1 Potentiodynamic study with different electrolyte concentrations:.. 67
3.1.2.2 Potentiodynamic study with different pH values:........... 70
3.1.2.3 Potentiodynamic study with different temperatures:.. 72
3.1.2.4 Potentiodynamic study with different pH and temperatures:..... 75
3.1.3 Linear polarization resistance for samples coated with PTMS:... 75
3.1.4 Structural characterization of PTMS-coated samples:..... 77
3.1.4.1 SEM + EDX:.............. 77
3.1.4.2 Optical microscopic studies for samples coated with PTMS:........ 79
3.1.4.3 Secondary ion mass spectroscopy:......... 80

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3.1.4.4 X-ray photo electron spectroscopy:............ 81


3.2 Comparison between PTMS, PTES and TEOS as different thin coated film after
drying:........ 83
3.2.1 Potentiodynamic test after zero immersion time:...... 83
3.2.2 Potentiodynamic test after 1 day immersion time in case of Al alloy only:.. 84
3.2.3 Optical microscopic studies for samples coated with TEOS, PTES and
PTMS:........ 85
3.2.4 Polarization resistance:.......... 86
3.2.5 Atomic force microscopy:............. 87
3.2.6 Contact angle measurements:........ 89
3.2.7 Infrared spectroscopy:....... 90
3.2.8 Weight loss and inhibition efficiency:....... 95
3.2.8.1 Weight loss after immersion for 1 day in different pH electrolyte
solution:....... 95
3.2.8.2 Weight loss after immersion for 7 days in 0.05 M NaCl:....... 96
Summary and conclusion:................ 98
References:... 101
Selbstndigkeitserklrung:....... 110
Curriculum Vitae:.... 111
Publications and Conferences:. 112

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CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION
1.1 Literature Review
1.1.1 Protection of pure aluminum from corrosion
Aluminum is the third most common element after oxygen and silicon on earth. It is an
important construction material for many applications in aerospace, aviation, automobiles,
household appliances, containers, and it is used for interconnects and electrodes in
electronic devices and integrated circuits [1 - 3] because of its good electrical and thermal
conductivities, low density, and high ductility. The corrosion resistance of aluminum is
based on its ability to form a natural oxide film on its surface in a wide variety of media [4
- 13]. Nevertheless, it has been reported, that the oxide film can readily undergo corrosion
reactions in chloride-containing environments [14 - 17]. For this reason, its corrosion
mechanism in chloride solutions has been investigated repeatedly [18 - 23].
The protection of aluminum and its oxide films against corrosive chloride attack using
either inorganic oxidants, including chromate as in zinc chromate [5, 21, 24, 25],
molybdate as zinc-phosphate-molybdate composite and sodium molybdate dihydrate
(Na2MoO4 2H2O) [26 - 28] or tungstate [5, 25], organic compounds having polar groups,
such as oxygen, sulfur, and nitrogen [29 - 38], and heterocyclic compounds containing
functional groups and conjugated double bonds [38 - 41] as corrosion inhibitors has been
studied by many researchers.
In sol-gel processes reactions between solutes being present in small amounts and solvent
(high amount) in solution resulting in deposits, the process is known as chemical solution
deposition. The attractive features of both process and products have resulted in more than
35,000 publications [see e.g. 42 - 44]. The sol-gel process can be used to form nano-

13

structured inorganic films (< 100 nm in overall thickness) which are more resistant than
underlying metals to oxidation, i.e. corrosion, showing good thermal and electrical
properties. The chemistry of the sol-gel process is well known [45 - 49]; sol-gel derived
products have numerous applications [50 - 53]. Sol-gel techniques can be used to prepare
a barrier coating showing low porosity preventing the surface of metal and alloy from
corrosion.

1.1.2 Protection of aluminum alloy from corrosion


Aluminum and its alloys are generally passive and corrosion resistant in aqueous solutions
except for pitting corrosion caused by reactive species, such as halide ions (e.g., chloride)
[54 - 56]. The passive film on the aluminum alloy surface is a poor electronic conductor
and cathodic reactions occur on the micron-size particles of impurity constituents or small
precipitate particles [57 - 69]. Various grades of aluminum alloy and metals were extensively used to study the effect of alloying elements on the breakdown of the passive film
[57 - 66]. The presence of alloying elements in the microstructure such as insoluble
intermetallic particles (Al2Cu, FeAl3) or single elements (Cu, Si) leads to a formation of
local electrochemical cells between them and the aluminum matrix [57 - 74]. This causes a
highly localized attack by pitting in aggressive medium [54 - 56]. Various factors affect the
pitting corrosion in aluminum alloys such as the type of aggressive ion and its concentration, the pH of the media, the temperature or the structural characteristics of the oxide passive film [56 - 74]. As an efficient replacement of highly toxic chromium-containing corrosion protection coatings thin layers of various materials obtained via sol-gel processing
have been proposed and evaluated [75, 76].

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1.2 Sol-Gel Process


It was discovered in the late 1800s and extensively studied since the early 1930s. Sol-gel
technology is proving to be very flexible with its variety of solution chemistries, and is
actively being researched as a replacement for chromate treatments. The sol-gel process
involves the growth of inorganic networks through the formation of a colloidal suspension
(sol) and gelation of the sol to form a network in a continuous liquid phase (gel). The
precursors for synthesizing these colloids consist of a metal or metalloid element
surrounded by various reactive ligands. Metal alkoxides are most popular because they
react readily with water.
The convenient solution to enhance the corrosion resistance of substrates is the deposition
of a protective barrier which can be achieved by several methods such as chemical vapor
deposition [77], physical vapor deposition [78], laser cladding [79], thermal spray [80] and
sol-gel [81]. Compared to other techniques, the sol-gel method seems simple as a
deposition procedure for preparing adherent and chemically inert metal oxide coatings at
low temperatures. Sol-gel techniques have several advantages besides being economical
and fast. So these can be used for all types of surfaces to control the size porosity of the
resultant thin film.
Sol-gel derived products have numerous applications [44, 82 - 86], for example, in the
synthesis of lightest materials and some of the toughest ceramics, in the field of optical,
electronics and energy. These thin films of respective material oxides are produced using a
spin or dip coating process. One of the largest application areas is thin films, which can be
produced on a piece of substrate by spin coating or dip coating is protective and decorative
coatings. Moreover, electro-optic components can be applied to glass, metal and other
types of substrates using these methods. Other coating techniques include spraying,
electrophoresis or inkjet printing.

15

Alkoxysilane is used as starting materials for network formation in the sol-gel process. The
low-temperature reaction rate allows scientists and researchers to incorporate organic
moieties into the inorganic network to provide a new class of materials which combine the
properties of reactants [87 - 89]. Organic components lead to an increased flexibility and
density while the inorganic part enhances hardness and durability. An effective coating
must be well-adherent to the substrate with a uniform and pore-free surface, which is
resistant to chemical/mechanical attack.
Sol-gel technique is depending on two steps hydrolysis and condensation reactions. The
mechanisms of hydrolysis and condensation, and the factors (organic radical of the ORgroup, solvent, catalyst, concentration and temperature) that have a bias the structure
toward linear or branched structures are the most critical issues of sol-gel science and
technology [90 - 97]. Hydrolysis reaction is a chemical reaction in which the molecules of
H2O are splitting into hydrogen cations (H+) and hydroxide anions (OH) [98]. In
hydrolysis reaction, the reaction between OH from H2O and R from silanol can be proven
by using H2O18. The presence of isotope in silanol confirms the mechanism [99] as
described in the following equation:
Si-OR + H18OH Si 18OH + ROH

(1)

Low hydrolysis reactivity of silicon precursor can be enhanced by either basic catalysis via
SN2 mechanism or by acidic catalysis via SN1 mechanism and with chelating ligands as
modifiers as well [100].
M(OR)4 + x H2O M(OH)x(OR)4-x + xROH
The SN2 mechanism is described in the following scheme [100]:

16

(2)

Hydroxide ions will attack silicon alkoxides by nucleophilic substitution following the S N2
mechanism. Usually, the hydrolysis of silicon alkoxides is slow because of the high
electronegativity of silicon compounds. An alternative reaction may occur in the acidic
environment via SN1 mechanism as in the following scheme [100]:

Condensation reaction is a chemical reaction in which two molecules combine to form a


siloxane [SiOSi] bond with loss of water or alcohol [101]. In a condensation reaction
two partially hydrolyzed molecules can link to form:
(OR)3Si-OH + HOSi-(OR)3 (OR)3SiOSi(OR)3 + H-O-H

(3)

(OR)3Si-OR + HOSi-(OR)3 (OR)3SiOSi(OR)3 + R-OH

(4)

or

These types of condensation reaction continue to build larger and larger silicon-containing
molecules by the process of polymerization. Thus, a polymer is a huge molecule (or
macromolecule) formed from hundreds or thousands of units called monomers.
Polymerization of silicon alkoxide, for instance, can lead to complex branching of the
polymer, because a fully hydrolyzed monomer Si(OH)4 is tetrafunctional (can branch or
bond in four different directions see Fig. 1.1).

Fig. 1.1: Sketches showing hydrolysis and condensation of silanes

17

The resulting solution/gel can then be converted to:


1- Xerogel by drying gel with shrinkage. Xerogel usually retains high porosity (25%),
high density and enormous surface area (150900 m2/g), along with very small pore
size (1-10 nm) it consists of 60-90% of air (Fig. 1.2).
2- Aerogel is derived from a gel in which the liquid component of the gel has been
replaced with a gas. The solvent will be removed by hypercritical conditions. The
network doesn't shrink, a highly porous and low-density material consisting of
typically 90-99% of air (Fig. 1.2).

Fig. 1.2: A sketch of the general process [52].

1.3 Applications of Sol-Gel Process


1.3.1 Spin-coating
Spin-coating technique has been used for several decades for the deposition of thin films
on different substrates [102,103]. It is a procedure used to apply uniform thin films to flat
substrates. A machine used for spin coating is called a spin coater with version Laurell
WS-400B-6NPP/LITE, maximum rpm: 10000, substrate size: 150 mm, process chamber:
22 cm and sample hold-down: vacuum (see Fig. 1.3).

18

Fig. 1.3: Spin coater machine

This method was first described by Emslie et al. (1958) and Meyerhofer et al. (1978) using
several simplifications. The spin coating process can be broken down into the four stages
shown in Fig. 1.4.

Fig. 1.4: The four stages of spin-coating process [104]

Initially, an excess amount of solution is being deposited onto the center of the surface. In
the second stage, the substrate is accelerated up to its final, desired, rotation speed, which
results in the rapid outwards flow of liquid caused by centrifugal force generated by the
rotating substrate. The spin off stage takes place for approximately 10 seconds after spin

19

up [105]. In the fourth stage, evaporation primarily causes thinning followed by subsequent
shrinkage of the film. Spin speed is one of the most important factors in spin coating. The
speed of the substrate in round per minute (rpm) affects the degree of radial (centrifugal)
force applied to the liquid resin as well as the velocity and characteristic turbulence of the
air immediately above it [106].

1.3.2 Dip Coating


It is a popular coating method used to form a homogeneous thin film on the surface of
metals by immersing a metal into a tank containing the coating material followed by
withdrawal of the substrate from the tank. Although the thin film which formed by dip
coating doesn't have to be flat comparing to spin coating, but its thicker. This thin film can
be applied in industrial processes [107].
Dip coating process can be divided into five steps as shown in Fig. 1.5. First, the substrate
is immersed in the solution of the coating material at a constant speed. The immersion time
is kept very low. Thin layer deposits itself on the substrate during withdrawal from the
coating material. The withdrawal is carried out at a constant speed to avoid any judder. We
can control the thickness of the coating by controlling the speed of withdrawing (faster
withdrawal gives thicker coating material). The excess of coating liquid will drain from the
surface at draining stage. The final stage is evaporation since the solvent evaporates from
the liquid to form this layer film over the surface of the metals [108].

20

Fig. 1.5: Stages of dip coating process, a-e) batch

The process has many advantages [109]. It can be used to coat wood, metals and glasses.
Single or double sides of samples can be coated, maximum production flexibility,
flexibility in the glass substrates, e.g. various forms or species of glass (white glass, grey
glass, etc.) and formation of the highest homogeneity over the surface of samples.

1.4 Corrosion and types of corrosion


1.4.1 Corrosion
It is the electrochemical reaction between the surface of the metal or alloy and
environment. The corrosion of a metal is the result of two simultaneous reactions that are
in equilibrium. During oxidation, metal loses electrons as per the fundamentals reaction M
Mn+ + ne- where M is the metal, Mn+ is the metal oxidized to metal ions and ne- is the

21

number of electrons which metal loses during the anodic process. On other hands,
reduction of metal takes place according to the following fundamental reaction as:
2H+ + 2e H2

Hydrogen reduction reaction

4H+ + O2 + 4e 2H2O

Oxygen reduction in acid solution

2H2O + O2 + 4e 4OH-

Oxygen reduction in basic or neutral solution

M3+ + e M2+

Metal ion reduction e.g. Fe3+ + e- Fe2+

[110]

The surface at which oxidation take place is called anode. It carries negative charges and is
designated by the sign (-); the resulting current is called the anodic current. Reduction
takes place on a surface called the cathode, designated by the sign (+); the reducing current
is called the cathodic current. There are four fundamental components in an
electrochemical corrosion cell, anode, cathode, electrolyte solution and electrical
connection between the anode and cathode for the flow of electron current. If any of the
above components is missing or disabled, the electrochemical corrosion process will be
stopped. Clearly, these elements are thus fundamentally important for corrosion
control [111].

1.4.2 Electrochemical reactions in aluminum corrosion


The fundamental reactions of the corrosion of aluminum in the aqueous mediums
have been the subject of many studies [19,112]. In simplified terms, the oxidation of
aluminum in water proceeds according to the equation (5):
Al Al3+ + 3e-

(5)

Metallic aluminum, in oxidation state 0, goes in solution as trivalent cation A13+ when
losing three electrons. This reaction is balanced by a simultaneous reduction in ions present
in the solution, which capture the released electrons. In common aqueous media with a pH
close to neutral such as fresh water, seawater, and moisture it can be shown by

22

thermodynamic considerations that only two reduction reactions can occur: - reduction of
H+ protons produced from dissociation of water molecules:
H2O H+ + OH-

(6)

3H+ + 3e- 3/2 H2

(7)

Globally, the corrosion of aluminum in aqueous media is the sum of two electrochemical
reactions, oxidation and reduction:
A1 Al3+ + 3e-

(8)

3H+ + 3e- 3/2 H2

(9)

A1 + 3H+ A13+ + 3/2 H2

(10)

A1 + 3H2O Al(OH)3 + 3/2 H2

(11)

or

This reaction is accompanied by a change in the oxidation state of aluminum which, from
the oxidation state 0 in the metal, is transformed into the oxidation state of alumina (+3),
and by an exchange of electrons, since aluminum loses three electrons that are picked up
by 3 H+. Aluminum corrosion results in the formation of aluminum hydroxide Al(OH)3,
which is insoluble in water and precipitates as a white gel, which is found in corrosion pits
as white gelatinous flakes.

1.4.3 Aluminum as a passive metal


Aluminum is naturally passive and, therefore, does not need to be passivated, unlike
certain metals such as steel. A metal that can be passivated has undergone a chemical
treatment or contains an alloying element, which renders it passive against the medium. It
can be depassivated, or may not have been passivated. This does not apply to aluminum,
which is of course always covered by its natural oxide layer [113]. Because of this highly
electronegative potential, aluminum is one of the easiest metals to oxidize (see Table 1.1).
However, aluminum behaves as a very stable metal, especially in oxidizing media (air,
23

water, etc.). This behaviour is due to the fact that aluminum, like all passive metals, is
covered with a continuous and uniform natural oxide film corresponding to the formula
A12O3, which is formed spontaneously according to equation 12,
2Al + 3/2 O2 Al2O3

(12)

The free energy of this oxidation reaction, - 1675 kJ, is one of the highest, which explains
the very high affinity of aluminum towards oxygen. The major importance of this oxide
film for the corrosion resistance of aluminum was recognized in 1896 by Richards [114]; it
has been the subject of a large number of investigations since 1930 [115].

Table 1.1: Standard oxidation-reduction potential at 298 K


Electrode
Li/Li+
K/K+
Ca/Ca2+
Na/Na+
Mg/Mg2+
Al/Al3+
Zn/Zn2+
Fe/Fe2+
Cd/Cd2+
Ni/Ni2+
Sn/Sn2+
Pb/Pb2+
Pt/H2 H+
Cu/Cu2+
Ag/Ag+
Hg/Hg+
Cl2/ClPt/Pt2+
Au/Au3+

Oxidation
reactions
Li = Li+ + eK = K+ + eCa = Ca2+ + 2eNa = Na+ + eMg = Mg2+ + 2eAl = Al3+ + 3eZn = Zn2+ + 2eFe = Fe2+ + 2eCd = Cd2+ + 2eNi = Ni2+ + 2eSn = Sn2+ + 2ePb = Pb2+ + 2eH2 = 2H+ + 2eCu = Cu2+ + 2eAg(s) = Ag+ + eHg(l) = Hg+ + e2Cl- = Cl2 (g) + 2ePt = Pt2+ + 2eAu = Au3+ + 3e-

Standards
potential (volts)
-3.040
-2.924
-2.870
-2.710
-2.380
-1.660
-0.762
-0.441
-0.403
-0.236
-0.140
-0.126
0.000
+0.337
+0.799
+0.920
+1.359
+1.200
+1.498

Nature

more active

more noble

Aluminum has high negative standard electrode potential of - 1660 mV, obtained by
calculation with respect to the free energy -G, which has one of the highest negative
values, -1657 KJ mol-1. Therefore, aluminum is expected to be very unstable in the
presence of moisture. However, experience shows that this is not the case, because

24

aluminum is covered by a natural oxide layer that modifies its behaviour compared to
thermodynamic prediction: aluminum is a passive metal. On the other hand, metals with a
positive potential as platinum and gold have a weak tendency to oxidation (Table l).

1.4.4 Forms of corrosion


1.4.4.1 Uniform corrosion
This is also called general corrosion. The surface effect produced by most direct chemical
attacks (e.g., an acid) is a uniform etching of the metal. General thinning takes place until
failure (Fig. 1.6). This kind of corrosion is easily observable and hence easy to protect by
coating or painting. Uniform corrosion is preferred from a technical standpoint because it
is predictable and thus acceptable for design [116]. The corrosion occurs to the metals
because the tendency of all metals to return to their lowest energy state, which is usually
the oxidized state.

Fig. 1.6: Uniform corrosion attack on structural steel [117].

1.4.4.2 Galvanic corrosion


It is an electrochemical process taking place between two dissimilar metals (different in
standard electrode potential values) which are in direct contact with each other, in the
presence of an electrolyte and an electron conductive path. This leads to deterioration of
anodic metal [116]. The nobility of a metal, i.e. its resistance to corrosion and oxidation in

25

moist air, can be evaluated from galvanic series. In a galvanic cell, the metal with highpotential value reacts as the anode and corrodes faster than it would alone. In contrast to
other metal which acts as the cathode and corrodes slower than it out of galvanic cell.

Fig. 1.7: Galvanic cell with all the elements required for corrosion [118].

Fig. 1.7 shows a general setup required for galvanic corrosion to occur. It consists of two
dissimilar metals with different potential values contacted together and immersed in an
electrolyte solution. The anode is the less noble of the two dissimilar metals. Fig. 1.8
shows the galvanic corrosion of aluminum in contact with a stainless steel screw.

Fig. 1.8: Corrosion of aluminum in contact with stainless steel screw [119].

The galvanic corrosion mechanism can be used to protect the metals from corrosion by
using the principle of a sacrificial anode which has more applications in ships, marine,
26

pipeline, etc. Sacrificial anode can be used as the anode to protect the metal from corrosion
depending upon its potential value as the metal with high-potential value will corrode
faster.

1.4.4.3 Pitting corrosion


It is a localized corrosion that leads to the creation of small holes in the metal [120]. The
pits are often found underneath surface deposits caused by corrosion product accumulation
(Fig. 1.9). It is considered one of the most destructive forms of corrosion as it leads to
equipment failure due to penetration.

Fig. 1.9: Pitting corrosion

The pitting corrosion occurs on the surface of metals as aluminum, stainless steel, etc.,
which has a metal oxide layer. From a purely thermodynamical point of view, aluminum is
active. However, in oxygen containing environment (air, water), aluminum is rapidly
covered with an oxide layers [113] which prevent aluminum or aluminum alloy from
further corrosion. The thickness of the oxide layer may vary as a function of temperature,
at ambient temperature the thickness of oxide layer is average between 23 nm. At high

27

temperatures (673-723 K), the film thickness will be increased by 15-20 nm [121]. When
the oxide film is damaged, e.g. by a scratch, new oxide will immediately form on the
surface of the metal because the rate of re-passivation is higher than the rate of corrosion
[122]. Higher rate of corrosion (compared to the rate of re-passivation) leads to further
corrosion. The pitting corrosion is initiated from a weak site in the oxide layer by a halide
ion attack [123,124]. Pits propagate according to the reactions:
Al3+ + 3H2O Al(OH)3 + 3H+

(13(

Al3+ + 3Cl- AlCl3

(14)

2H+ + 2e- H2

(15)

O2 + 2H2O + 4e- 4OH-

(16)

Oxidation of the aluminum anode leads to the formation of aluminum ion, which combines
with chloride ions to form aluminum chloride and free electron moves to the cathode
where reduces hydrogen cation to form hydrogen gas. Moreover, oxygen reduction also
takes place at intermetallic cathode resulting in the formation of hydroxyl ions (Fig. 1.10).

Fig. 1.10: Mechanism of pitting corrosion [125].

Formation of insoluble Al(OH)3 will prevent oxygen to react with metal. The chloride ions
will migrate into the pit depending on its low radius to balance with positive hydrogen ions
as described in equation 17:

28

H+ + Cl- HCl

(17)

Then AlCl3 will be hydrolyzed as describe in equation (18):


AlCl3 + 3H2O Al(OH)3 + 3HCl

(18)

Which make the medium more acidic and accelerate pit propagation. The reduction
reaction will cause local alkalinization around cathodic particles, which leads to dissolution
of aluminum particles.

Pitting type

It is more dangerous than the uniform type because it is very difficult to detect, predict and
design against. The types of pitting corrosion commence when the protective thin layer
(oxide film) is chemically or mechanically damaged and does not immediately repassivate. This damage of a protective oxide layer leads to the formation of pits with
different diameter and holes of varying dimensions, which can rapidly perforate the wall
thickness of a metal (Fig. 1.11).

Fig. 1.11: Variations in cross-sectional shape of pits [126].

29

The shapes of pitting corrosion can only be identified through metallography where a
pitted sample is cross-sectioned and shape, in turn size and the depth of penetration can be
determined. The main reason for pitting corrosion is environment or use of aggressive
chemical species such as chlorides. Chlorides are particularly damage the passive film
(oxide layer) so pitting initiates with the breakdown of oxide layer. Factors that influence
the occurrence of pitting attacks are primarily the chloride content, acidity, and the
temperature. Another factor causing pitting is the presence of oxygen, which is responsible
for oxidation process or certain metal ions. At high oxygen, content increases the corrosion
potential (capability of passive-film weakening) of the metal and thus increases the risk of
pitting corrosion. Consequently, low oxygen content considerably reduces the risk of
pitting. Pitting corrosion can be prevented by controlling pH (~7), halogen concentration
and temperature.

1.4.4.4 Crevice corrosion


It is a type of localized corrosion that can be found within crevices where a stagnant
solution is present [127]. Crevice corrosion occurs at narrow openings or spaces between
two metal surfaces or between metals and nonmetal surfaces. A concentration cell form
with the crevice being depleted of oxygen. This differential aeration between the crevice
(microenvironment) and the external surface (bulk environment) gives the crevice an
anodic character. This can contribute to a highly corrosive condition in the crevice. Fig.
1.12 represents one of the most kinds of localized corrosion because it occurs in the areas
that are not clearly visible. Therefore, crevice corrosion may lead to sudden devastating
failure of the metal in service.

30

Fig. 1.12: Crevice corrosion of titanium flange at an interface with a nonmetallic gasket
[128].

1.4.4.5 Intergranular corrosion (IGC)


Intergranular corrosion (IGC) is the selective dissolution of the grain boundary zone, while
the bulk grain of metal or alloy is not attacked [127]. The susceptibility to IGC is
depending on the alloy composition and thermomechanical processing. Grain boundaries
are sites for precipitation and segregation, which makes them physically and chemically
different from the matrix. The structure of bulk grains is chemically different from the
grain boundaries. The accumulation of impurities is the cause of this corrosion. Exfoliation
is a form of intergranular corrosion, which has a close relationship with aluminum alloys
(Fig. 1.13).

Fig. 1.13: Intergranular corrosion of a failed aircraft component made of 7075 aluminum
[129].

31

1.5 Thermodynamics
1.5.1 Pourbaix Diagram (potential-pH diagram)
It is a graphical presentation of the thermodynamic equilibrium states of a metal-electrolyte
system. Pourbaix diagrams plotted electrode potential of the metal vs. pH of the
electrolyte. Oxidizing conditions are described by the top part of the diagram (high positive
electrode potential). Reducing conditions are described by the bottom part of the diagram
(high negative electrode potential). Acidic solutions are presented in the left side of the
diagram (pH lower than 7). Alkaline solutions are presented in the right side of the diagram
(pH higher than 7). In case of aluminum, only four species containing the aluminum
element will be considered:

two solid species Al and Al2O3 H2O (aq)

two ionic species Al3+ and AlO2- (s)

The first equilibrium examines the possible presence of either Al3+ or AlO2- expressed in
equation.
Al3+ + 2H2O AlO2- + 4H+

(19)

From equation (19), it can be indicated that there is no change in a valence of the
aluminum present in the two ionic species considered the associated equilibrium is
independent of the potential, and the expression of that equilibrium can be derived in the
following expression for standard conditions.
RT ln Keq = RT ln Q = - G0reaction

(20)

Where, R: universal gas constant (8.314 J mol-1 K-1), T: absolute temperature (K), Keq:
equilibrium const, Q: reaction quotient and G0: standard free energy. From equation (21),
the equilibrium constant can be calculated.

32

Q=

a AlO - x a 4H+
2

(21)

aAl x a 2H O
3+

Assuming that the activity of H2O is unity and that the activities of the two ionic species
are equal, one can obtain a simpler expression of the equilibrium in equation (21) based
purely on the activity of H+, equation and its logarithmic form, equation (22 and 23).
RT ln [H+]4 = -G0reaction

(22)

Log10 [H+] = -pH = - G0reaction / 4 2.303 RT

(23)

Equation (23) can be simplified by adding the data for R = 8.314 J mol-1 K-1 and T = 298 K
to be:
pH = 4.38 10-5 G0reaction

(24)

By using the standard thermodynamic data from the literature [130], it is possible to
calculate that the free energy of reaction is in fact equal to 120.44 k J mol-1 when both
[Al3+] and [AlO2-] are equal.
G0 = 3 96485 0.415 = 120.44 k J mol-1

(25)

pH = 4.38 10-5 120440 = 5.27

(26)

From Fig. 1.14 we can see a dotted vertical line at pH = 5.27, which separates between two
ions pieces of Al3+ at low pH and AlO2- at the higher end of the pH scale.

Fig. 1.14: E-pH diagram showing the soluble species of aluminum in water at 298 K.

33

Fig. 1.15 is to consider all possible reactions (see Table 1.2) between the four chemical
species, i.e. Al, Al2O3H2O, Al3+, and AlO2-. The following Fig. 1.15 illustrates the results
of such computation for aluminum in the presence of water at 298 K when the activities of
all species considered were set at value unity. The Pourbaix diagram of aluminum,
presented in Fig. 1.15, indicates that Al2O33H2O, is the stable phase between about pH 4
and 9 [113]. Indeed, this film is considered to be responsible for the successful use of
aluminum in many structural applications. This diagram also predicts the amphoteric
nature.

Fig. 1.15: E-pH diagram of solid species of aluminum when the soluble species are at one
molar concentration (298 K).

Fig. 1.16: E-pH corrosion diagram of aluminum at 298 K.


34

Fig. 1.16 showed the three possible states of a metallic material; a) corrosion region, metal
is stable as an ionic (soluble) product and therefore, susceptible to corrosion attack, b)
immunity region; it can be defined as the lack of attack on a metal when exposed to
corrosion it is considered to be totally immune from corrosion attack and safe to use, c)
passive region; it is the region which covered with an oxide or hydroxide layer that may
form on metal by compact and adherent to prevent all direct contact between the metal
itself and the environment.

Table 1.2: Has the total reaction of four species.


Equilibria involving aluminum metal
3e- + A3+ = Al
3e- + Al(OH)3 + 3H+ = Al + 3H2O
6e- + Al2O3.H2O + 6H+ = 2Al + 4H2O
3e- + AlO2- + 4H+ = Al + 2H2O
3e- + Al(OH)2+ + H+ = Al + H2O
3e- + Al(OH)2+ + 2H+ = Al + 2H2O
Equilibria involving solid forms of oxidized aluminum
Al(OH)3 + H+ = Al(OH)2+ + H2O
Al2O3.H2O + 2H+ = 2Al(OH)2+
Al(OH)3 + 2H+ = Al(OH)2+ + 2H2O
Al2O3.H2O + 4H+ = 2Al(OH)2+ + 2H2O
Al(OH)3 + 3H+ = Al3+ + 3H2O
Al2O3.H2O + 6H+ = 2Al3+ + 4H2O
Al(OH)3 = AlO2- + H+ + H2O
Al2O3.H2O = 2AlO2- + 2H+
Equilibria involving only soluble forms of oxidized aluminum
AlO2- + 4H+ = Al3+ + 2H2O

1.5.2 Gibbs free energy (G)


It is thermodynamic quantities, which can be used to predict whether a process will occur
spontaneous or not at constant pressure and temperature. It is also known as free enthalpy
[131]. The reaction with high negative value of G has the tendency to go and continue.
For example, consider the following reaction at 298 K:
Mg + H2O(l) + 1/2 O2 (g) Mg(OH)2 (s)

G0 = -596,600 J (27)

Cu + H2O(l) + 1/2O2 (g) Cu(OH)2 (s)

G0 = -119,700 J (28)

Au + 3/2H2O(l) + 3/4O2 (g) Au(OH)3 (s)

G0 = + 65,700 J (29)

35

From the values of G0 in equation 28 and 29 we can see that the tendency of magnesium
to react with water and oxygen (equation 27) is higher than the tendency of copper to react
with water and oxygen in the same condition (equation 28). The corrosion tendency of
magnesium is higher than the corrosion tendency of copper in aerated water. Finally if the
value of G0 with positive value (equation 29) this meaning that the reaction has no
tendency to go at all, and this metal (gold) will not corrode to form Au(OH)3 in the
aqueous mediums.
The relation between G in joules and electromotive force (emf) in volts, E, is defined by
G = nFE, where n is the number of electrons taking part in the reaction, and F is the
Faraday's constant (96485 coulombs/mol).

1.5.3 Nernst Equation


It is used to calculate the voltage of an electrochemical cell or to find the concentration of
one of the components of the cell [132].
Ecell = E0cell - (RT/nF) lnQ

(30)

Which, Ecell is cell potential under nonstandard conditions (V), E0cell is cell potential under
standard conditions, R is gas constant (8.314 J mol-1 K-1), T is temperature (K), n is the
number of electrons in such a reaction equation, its related to the amount of charge
transferred when the reaction is completed, F is Faraday's constant, 96485 coulombs/mol
and Q = reaction quotient, which is a function of the activities or concentrations of the
chemical species involved in a chemical reaction. Nernst equation can be written in a
simple method [133]:
Ecell = E0cell - (0.0591/n) logQ

(31)

Q can be calculated by divided the product values over the reactant values as here;
A + B S + T

(32)

Qr = {St} {Tt}t / {At} {Bt}

(33)
36

Nernst Equation Example; a zinc electrode is submerged in an acidic 0.80 M Zn2+ solution,
which is connected by a salt bridge to a 1.30 M Ag+ solution containing a silver electrode.
Determine the initial voltage of the cell at 298 K.
The cathodic reaction can be:
E0red:

Zn2+ (aq) + 2e- = Zn (s)

-0.76 V

(34)

E0red:

Ag+ (aq) + e- = Ag (s)

+0.80 V

(35)

From upon equation (34 and 35) we can see that this reaction can be happen only if Zn
became anode and exposed to oxidation (loss electrons) and Ag became cathode and
exposed to a reduction (accept electrons). So equation (34 and 35) needs to be
rearrangement as;
E0oxid: Zn (s) = Zn2+ (aq) + 2e-

+0.76 V

(36)

E0red:

+0.80 V

(37)

+1.56 V

(38)

2Ag+ (aq) + 2e- = 2Ag (s)

The total reaction is,


Zn (s) + 2Ag+ (aq) = Zn2+ (aq) + 2Ag (s)
To calculate the cell potential from equation;
Ecell = E0cell - (0.0591 /n) log Q

(39)

Ecell = E0cell - (0.0591 /2) log (0.76/0.8)

(40)

Ecell = 1.56 (-6.583 x 10-4) = 1.566 V

(41)

1.6 Kinetic Aspects of Corrosion Process


1.6.1 Overpotential ()
It is the difference in the electric potential of an electrode with no current flowing through
it, at equilibrium, and with a current flowing. To measure overpotential the extra energy
needed to force the electrode reaction to proceed at a required rate. The overpotential
increases with increasing current density [134].

37

When two different metals such as zinc and magnesium are completely connected together
in an aerated medium since, zinc is immersed in hydrochloric acid occur over a single
metallic surface, the Ecorr that results from this situation is a compromise between the
various equilibrium potentials of all the anodic and cathodic reactions involved. The
difference between the resultant potential (E) and equilibrium potential (Eeq) is called
polarization and quantified in terms of overpotential () as in equation (42):
= E - Eeq

(42)

The polarization is said to be either anodic, when the anodic processes on the electrode are
accelerated by changing the sample potential in the positive (noble) direction or cathodic
when the cathodic processes are accelerated by moving the potential in the negative
(active) direction.

1.6.2 Concentration Polarization


It is the polarization component that is caused by concentration changes in the environment
near to the surface of metal as illustrated in the following Fig. 1.17. When a chemical
species participating in a corrosion process is in short supply, the mass transport of that
species to the corroding surface can become rate controlling. The concentration of
dissolved oxygen limits the cathodic reaction rate [135,136].

38

Fig. 1.17: Concentration changes in the vicinity of an electrode causing a concentration


polarization effect

The rate of the corrosion can be controlled by the mass transport of species to the surface.
Fig. 1.18 showed that the mass transport to a surface is depending on three forces, which are
diffusion, migration and convection [136]. When there is no electric field passing this lead to
negligible the migration term which has effects only on charged ionic species. In case of
convection force, it is disappeared in stagnant conditions.

Fig. 1.18: Graphical representation of the processes occurring at an electrochemical interface.

39

1.6.3 Butler-Volmer equation


It is describes how the electric current on an electrode depends on the electrode potential,
considering that both a cathodic and an anodic reaction occur on the same electrode:

jreaction= j0

exp -

nF
RT

reaction

- exp 1-

nF
RT

(43)

reaction

where, jreaction is the anodic or cathodic current, : is the charge transfer barrier for the
anodic or cathodic reaction, usually close to 0.5, n is the number of participating electrons,
R is the universal gas constant (8.314 J mol-1 K-1), T is the absolute temperature (298 K),
and F is Faraday constant 96485 C/(mole of electrons).
When reaction is cathodic, i.e. negative, the second term in the Butler-Volmer equation
becomes negligible and equation (43) can be written in a simple method as:
Jreaction = jcath = j0 exp (-nF reaction / RT)

(44)

reaction = cath = bc log10 (jcath. / j0)

(45)

where bc is the cathodic Tafel coefficient described in equation (46);


bc = -2.303 RT / nF

(46)

that can be obtained from the slope of a plot of against log current density, with the
intercept yielding a value for j0 as shown in the following Fig. 1.19.

Fig. 1.19: Plot of overpotential () vs. log current density.


40

Similarly, when r is anodic, i.e. positive, the first term in the Butler-Volmer equation
becomes negligible and the anodic current density (janode ) can be expressed by equation and
its logarithm, with banode obtained by plotting reaction vs. log |j|:

jreaction = janode = - j0 exp 1-

reaction

anode

= banode log10

nF
RT

reaction

janode

(47)
(48)

j0

ba = 2.303 RT / nF

(49)

1.7 Aim of the work


Owing to host of favorable characteristics, aluminum and its alloys find a wide variety of
applications in the field of automobiles, aircraft industry, household appliances, storage
containers and electronic devices. These characteristics include low density, low cost,
lightweight, high ductility, high strength, high thermal and electrical conductivity and
corrosion resistance. Corrosion resistance of aluminum and its alloys is due to the
formation of a passive oxide film on exposure to air. This film is bonded strongly to the
surface and is stable in aqueous solutions over a wide pH range from 4 to 9. However,
mechanical work and polishing cause the formation of tiny pores in thin oxide layer,
thereby exposing the metal surface to a corrosive environment.
Various protective methods have been employed to produce anti-corrosive thin films, e.g.
paint and sol-gel (dip, spin, spray or electrodeposition) coating methods. Thin films can be
formed by mixing organic or inorganic silanes with suitable catalysts. The resistance of
coating depends on various factors such as, speed of stirring for mixing the reactants and
that of solvent with distilled water.

41

The present work aims to prepare anti-corrosive coating to protect aluminum alloy
AA7075 from corrosion. Phenyltrimethoxysilane (PTMS), tetraethoxysilane (TEOS), and
Phenyltriethoxysilane (PTES) have been used in sol-gel coating systems. Spin-coating
method has been used to coat aluminum alloy samples by these coatings to study the effect
of these coatings on decreasing the pit formation and increasing the hydrophobicity.
Initially, parameters were optimized for PTMS coating alone, to achieve maximum
corrosion resistance.
Suitable speed of spin-coating machine was selected to produce a very thin coating which
can be used as a barrier to protect Al-alloy from corrosion. DekTak 8000 was used to
measure the thickness of coated layer in case of samples coated with PTMS. Dependence
of film thickness on spin speed, spinning time, drying time and drying temperature was
determined. The uncoated and coated samples with PTMS were subjected to potentiodynamic tests with different electrolyte concentrations, pH and varying temperatures. The
structural characterization of PTMS coating was done by SEM+EDX, optical microscopy,
SIMS and XPS.
Comparison of different coatings (PTMS, TEOS and PTES) was done using potentiodynamic tests after zero and 1 day immersion time. The occurrence of local corrosion was
investigated by optical microscopy. The linear polarization method was used for to obtain
the polarization resistance (Rp). The linear polarization was applied for 50 mV around the
open-circuit potential at a scan rate of 2.0 mV/s.
Structural characterization of coatings was done by Fourier transform infrared
spectroscopy (FTIR) and atomic force microscopy, thereby characterizing average
roughness, root mean square roughness and 3-D images. The weight loss and inhibition
efficiency was also determined.

42

CHAPTER II
EXPERIMENTAL
2.1 Samples preparation
2.1.1 Polishing process
The aluminum alloy (AA7075) was cut into discs (3 cm diameter, 0.5 cm thickness) and
polished with a Beta grinder/polishing machine (Buehler-Met GmbH) with SiC abrasive
paper grit 600 (Fig. 2.1). Samples were cleaned and degreased ultrasonically with ethanol
and distillate water for a few minutes. Finally, they were cleaned with ethanol and dried
with air prior to the spin-coating process.

Fig. 2.1: Grinder-Polisher Machine.

2.1.2 Sol preparation


The coating solutions were prepared by mixing 2.5 ml phenyltrimethoxysilane (Alfa Aesar,
97%) or 2.5 ml phenyltriethoxysilane (Aldrich, 98%) or tetraethoxysilane (Alfa Aesar,

43

98%), 1.25 ml acetic acid (Fluka, 99%, used as a catalyst) and 1.25 ml acetylacetone
(Sigma-Aldrich, 99%, used as stabilizing agent to prevent rapid condensation under
constant stirring for 5 minutes at ambient temperature). A mixture of 2 ml n-propanol
(Fisher, 99.9%, used as cosolvent to prevent precipitation) and 0.5 ml distilled water was
added (the silane film was dissolved in ethanol as quickly as it is formed so that no layer or
a mono layer is left on the surface, by this way, samples can be subjected to various
surface sensitive techniques). The solution was stirred at ambient temperature for 90 min to
complete hydrolysis and condensation reactions. The resulting solution was deposited on
the polished aluminum alloy samples with spin-coating at 4,000 rpm for 90 s. Finally, the
samples were heated at 573 K for 150 min in a furnace.

2.2 Electrochemical measurements


Electrochemical measurements were carried out in a conventional three-electrode cell (Fig.
2.2) with the aluminum alloy samples (3 cm diameter and 0.3 cm thickness) as working
electrodes with exposed surface area 2 cm2 (Fig. 2.3), an Ag/AgCl reference electrode, and
a platinum counter electrode. Cyclic potentiodynamic current vs. potential curves were
recorded in the range - 1.5 > EAg/AgCl > 0 V at dE/dt = 50 mVs-1 at ambient temperature. A
relatively high scan rate was chosen to avoid additional corrosive damage of the sample.
Dissolution current density (jdiss) at 50 mV from open circuit potential (OCP) in the anodic
direction was selected as a reference point for comparison between coated and uncoated
samples as shown in Fig. 2.4. The electrolyte solution contained 0.05 M NaCl at different
pH-values or different concentrations of NaCl at fixed pH = 7. A Princeton Applied Research Potentiostat (Parstat 2273) was used with Power Suite 2.58 software (Fig. 2.5).

44

Fig. 2.2: The apparatus (cell) for potentiodynamic and potentiostatic testing.

Fig. 2.3: Working electrode with exposed surface area 2 cm2 in electrochemical cell.

0.1

Anode
0.01

Cathode
1E-3

j /Acm

-2

1E-4

1E-5

1E-6

OCP
1E-7

+E = 50 mV
1E-8
-1.6

-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

0.2

EAg/AgCl/V

Fig. 2.4: Current density vs. potential plot of uncoated aluminum alloy in 0.05 M NaCl.

45

Fig. 2.5: A Princeton Applied Research potentiostat Parstat 2273

2.2.1 Porosity determination


Potential scans with a Princeton Applied Research potentiostat Parstat 2273 and
PowerSuite 2.58 Software were used to measure the film porosity electrochemically. The
samples were used as working electrode in a three electrode setup with a platinum counter
electrode and a saturated AgCl reference electrode. The dissolution current density of the
samples was measured in the potential range -1.5 > EAg/AgCl > 0 V at dE/dt = 50 mV s-1 at
ambient temperature. A mildly corrosive electrolyte solution and a relatively fast scan rate
were used in order to minimize corrosive damage to the sample. Under these conditions,
the current density jdiss at E = EOCP (open circuit potential) + 50 mV chosen for the porosity
evaluation depends primarily on the area of the exposed, uncoated metal. The average film
porosity can be calculated from the ratio of the maximum dissolution current densities of
coated and uncoated reference samples [137,138]. This method has been successfully
applied with different coating systems before and is described in detail elsewhere [139].

2.3 Linear polarization resistance (Rp)


Rp can be defined as the slope of the potential-current density (dE/di) curve at the free
corrosion potential. The polarization resistance measurement was carried out by using the
same electrolytic cell shown in Fig. 2.2 to determine Rp, corrosion current (icorr) and

46

corrosion rate (CR). The corrosion current is related to polarization resistance by SternGeary equation (50),
Rp = B / icorr

(50)

where, Rp is polarization resistance, icorr is the corrosion current and B is Stern-Geary


constant, which can be calculated from equation (51)
B = BaBca / 2.303(Ba+Bca)

(51)

using the Tafel slopes Ba and Bca of the anodic and cathodic parts of Tafel plots in
millivolts per decade. Linear polarization measurements were performed at a scan rate
(dE/dt) = 2.0 mVs-1 with the samples previously immersed for 1 day in 0.05 M NaCl
solution. In all Rp experiments, samples were immersed in the electrolyte solution for the
same time with different pH until equilibrium was established, then Rp, CR and icorr have
been determined [140]. The scan range was 0.02 V and + 0.02 V vs. OCP, since OCP
was measured after 15 minutes by using Parstat 2273 machine with software PowerSuite
2.58.

2.4 Determine the film thickness by DekTak D8000


Fig. 2.6 illustrates Dektak D8000 profilometer. The coated samples with Si film were cut
with a razor blade to form up and down area then the average roughness between them can
be measured with Dektak D8000 a typical resulting profile is shown in Fig. 2.7. The height
difference between a substrate and coating surface step was measured and showed that this
can be done with an acceptable error. The measured crater depths were used to calculate
sputter rates and the position of the metal/oxide interface. The geometry of the crater
(walls, bottom and bottom roughness) was also checked for its influence on the depth
resolution of the analysis [141]. The Dektak D8000 is a very high-precision measuring
instrument capable of measuring surface variations from 1 Ao to 2620 Ao with a vertical
resolution between 1 and 40 Ao. The main interest in this instrument is the measurement of
47

surface variations by mechanical scanning of a diamond stylus. The thickness of the


coating layer was approximately 88.9 nm.

Fig. 2.6: DekTak D8000

20
0

Heigth (nm)

-20
-40
-60
-80
-100
0

50

100

150

200

250

Length (nm)

Fig. 2.7: Cut made across a spin-coated sol-gel film on aluminum alloy measured by
Dektak 8000.

48

2.5 Weight loss measurement


Tests were done in 250 ml glass beakers containing 150 ml of 0.05 M NaCl solution with
different pH-values (neutral, acidic and basic) at ambient temperature. The samples were
weighed before immersion in the test solutions. To determine the loss of weight, the
samples were removed after immersion for various numbers of days, washed with distilled
water, dried and then weighted again [142 - 145]. The corrosion rate (CR) is calculated
using the following equation [146,147]:
Corrosion Rate (CR) = 3.45 106 W / A D T

(52)

where W is a weight loss in grams, A is the area of sample in cm2 (2 x 3.14 = 6.28 cm2),
D is the density of the sample in g/cm3 (2.7 g/cm3) and T is time of immersion samples in
electrolyte solution by hours.

2.6 Analytical Techniques


2.6.1 Scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy
(SEM+EDX).
It is a type of electron microscope that used electrons instated of light to study the surface
of the samples (uncoated and coated). Due to the very narrow electron beam, it has the
ability to show the surface samples in three-dimensional, which are useful for judging the
surface structure of the samples. It gives information about the surface morphology and
texture. In this thesis, the diameter of the samples was 3 cm and the thickness was 0.5 cm.
The corrosion behavior of the samples was monitored using scanning electron microscopy
(SEM-Fig. 2.8) during immersion in 0.05 M NaCl solution open to air and at ambient
temperature for different times. SEM images were obtained using a digital scanning
electron microscope Model XL30-FEG (field emission gun), Magen 500x (100 A).
Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDS, also called EDXA for Energy-Dispersive Xray Analysis) is a technique that uses a scanning electron microscope for elemental
49

analysis or chemical characterization of a sample. As the SEM scans the surface of a


sample with an electron beam, when the sample emits x-rays, it will be collected by a
detector to measure both their numbers and energies. This analysis gives users a chance to
determine the elemental composition (by mounts or percents) of the sample [148]. EDS is
often used for characterization of coatings and alloys, and evaluation of corrosion.
In a typical SEM, electrons are thermionically emitted from a tungsten or lanthanum
hexaboride (LaB6) cathode and are accelerated towards an anode. Using tungsten as
cathode because it has the highest melting point and lowest vapor pressure of all metals, by
this way allowing it to be heated for electron emission. A schematic sketch elucidating the
principle of working of SEM is shown in Fig. 2.9.
1) The electron source (gun) which producing a stream of monochromatic electrons. 2) The
stream is condensed by the first condenser lens. This lens is used to both form the beam
and limit the amount of currents in the beam. It works in conjunction with the condenser
aperture to eliminate the high-angle electrons from the beam. 3) The beam is then
constricted by the condenser aperture, which lead to eliminate some high-angle electrons.
4) The second condenser lens forms the electrons into a thin, tight, coherent beam and is
usually controlled by the "fine probe current knob." 5) A user selectable objective aperture
further eliminates high-angle electrons from the beam. 6) The beam passes through pairs of
scanning coils in the objective lens, which deflect the beam in a raster fashion over a
rectangular area of the sample surface. 7) The final lens plays an important role to focus
the scanning beam onto the part of the sample desired. 8) When the beam strikes the
sample for a few microseconds, interactions occur inside the sample and are detected with
various instruments.

50

Fig. 2.8: Scanning electron microscopy instrument

Fig. 2.9: Schematic diagram of an SEM.

2.6.2 Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR)


FTIR is a common technique for organic compound characterization. Nicolet IR 200
instrument (see Fig. 2.10) was used to measure liquid samples and solid samples have been
measured by using Nicolet iS10 FT-IR (see Fig. 2.11). All files were saved and analyzed
with EZ OMNIC program. FTIR was used to determine the composition and chemical
structure of the various components. The obtained data was used to support the proposed

51

reactions. The chemical structure of the resulting coatings was determined by using
reflection absorption FTIR spectroscopy at a resolution of 4 cm-1. 16 additive scans were
carried out between 4000 to 400 wave numbers. Sodium chloride was used as standard.
The liquid sample was handled by sandwiching a drop of sample between 2NaCl windows.
To measure the samples by infrared spectroscopy, IR radiation is passed through a sample.
Some of this radiation is absorbed by the sample, and some of it is transmitted. The
resulting spectrum represents the molecular absorption and transmission, creating a
molecular fingerprint of the sample. As the same in fingerprint there are no two molecular
structures have the same infrared spectrum. This reason makes infrared spectroscopy
useful for several types of analysis.

Fig. 2.10: Infrared for liquid samples

52

Fig. 2.11: Infrared for solid samples

2.6.3 Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)


AFM has become a standard technique to image with high resolution the topography of
surfaces [149 - 154]. The probe consists of a sharp tip (made of silicon or silicon nitride,
which is a 3-6 m tall pyramid with 15-40 nm end radius) attached to a force-sensitive
cantilever. The tip scans across the surface move up and down with the contours of the
surface, and the cantilever deflects in response to force interactions between the tip and the
substrate see Fig. 2.12 and 2.13. Such deflection is monitored by moving a laser beam
from the cantilever onto a photodetector. The measured force is attributed to repulsion
generated by the overlap of the electron cloud at the probe tip with the electron cloud of
surface atoms.
AFM can image both conductors and nonconductors with atomic resolution, because it
measures the interatomic force between the atom on the surface and the tip. The mean
roughness, RMS roughness and the 3-D morphology of the coatings obtained from atomic
force microscopy (AFM). In this research, JPK NanoWizard II (Berlin - Germany) was
used to capture the images. An area of 5 m was scanned at a scan rate of 2.543 Hz.

53

Fig. 2.12: Scheme of atomic force microscopy

Fig. 2.13: Atomic force microscopy instrument

2.6.4 Contact Angle () Measurement


It is the angle between the solid surface and the tangent drawn from the droplet to the
touch of the solid surface. It is used to measure the interfacial energy (it is the sum of free
energy of all the molecules present in the interface between different materials) of the

54

surface where liquid and solid are in contact. The contact angle () measurement was used
to evaluate the hydrophobic nature of coating by using a goniometer CAM 100 (KSV 100
software) surface analysis system with high speed CCD camera for image capture a light
source, sample stage and lens as shown in Fig. 2.14. Deionised water was used for
evaluation of the properties of the coated substrate. Angle measurements were done in
triplicates. Water was taken in the syringe and drop (~10 l) was allowed to fall on the
substrate and left and right contact angles were measured for 10 s. The average contact
angle was found out by averaging the left and right contact angles.
When a liquid has a high surface energy, it will form a droplet on the solid surface [155]
having high hydrophobicity and helps against corrosions by water. When a liquid has a low
surface energy, it will spread out over a greater area and the film formed by the liquid will
be hydrophilic and has a poor corrosion protection performance. Surface energy
calculations were not carried out.

Fig. 2.14: View of contact angle instrument

2.6.5 Secondary Ion Mass Spectroscopy (SIMS)


Secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) was used to obtain information about the element distribution within the coating layer [156 - 161] using a double focusing sector field
instrument (Cameca ims 5f) with 17 kV O- primary ions (Fig. 2.15). As the layer also

55

contains oxygen, the use of cesium primary ions would have been advantageous, but
suffered from sample charging effects, even with an additional gold coating on top.
Sputtered positive secondary ions were detected from the inner 60 m of an area of
150150 m.

Fig. 2.15: Secondary ion mass spectrometer Cameca ims5f

2.6.6 X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS)


It is an important technique which is used to determine the electronic state and chemical
composition of the sample. Extensive research has been performed on silane films with
various techniques; including XPS [162 - 164]. The measurement of samples by XPS was
done by exposure to X-ray photons under high vacuum. Photons penetrate several
nanometers (10-100) deep into the superficial layer of the sample to excite photoelectrons.
They interact with atoms in the surface regions causing electrons to be emitted by the
photoelectron effect. The kinetic energy of the photoelectrons emitted from the sample
surface is analyzed. The emitted photoelectrons have kinetic energies, Ekin given by:
Ekin = h Eb - s

(53)

56

where h is the energy of the photon, Eb is the binding energy of the atomic orbital from
which the electrons originates and sp is the sample work function (assuming conductive
samples).
The diameter of the analyzer and the pass energy in the X-ray source play a major role in
determining the full width half maximum for a given photoelectric line. X-ray
photoelectron spectrometry measurements were performed using 5.85 eV pass energy with
a step width of 0.05 eV for the detail spectra and 187.85 eV with a step width of 0.8 eV for
the survey spectra. The binding energies of the elements of interest were calibrated with
respect to the C1s photoemission line 284.5 eV [165]

2.6.7 Optical Microscopy (OM)


OM was used to evaluate uncoated and coated surface coverage. The morphology surface
has been characterized by an optical microscope [60], Model Olympus BX 50 with a
camera Nikon DXM 1200.

57

Chapter III
Results
3.1 Study the effect of PTMS coating on aluminum alloy
3.1.1 Optimization of PTMS sol solution
3.1.1.1 Study the effect of Acetic Acid (AcAc)
The effect of AcAc can be easily explained in terms of protonation of alkoxy groups and
providing better leaving groups, which lead to the substitution of OR groups by OH group
[166]. Metal alkoxides react with organic acids according to:
M(OR)n + xRCOOH = M(OR)n-x (OOCR)x + xROH

(54)

It has been noticed that acetate groups attack the alkoxy groups on the alkoxide. This
enables the control of both hydrolysis and condensation reaction [167].
Si(OR)4 + nAcOH Si(OR)4-x (OAc)x + xROH + (n-x)AcOH

(55)

However, excess of acetic acid leads to the formation of corresponding ester:


C2H5OH + CH3COOH = CH3-COO-C2H5 +H2O

(56)

The excess of water can prompt further hydrolysis of silicon alkoxide, which can result in
the formation of unwanted products. For this reason, an optimized amount of acid has to be
added to the solution to control the rate of hydrolysis and condensation reactions and to
inhibit unwanted reactions to occur. To investigate the effect of acid catalyst, several sol
solutions of PTMS containing different amounts of acetic acid were prepared (Table 3.1).
Table 3.1: Different sols containing different amounts of acetic acid (AcAc).
Sol
1
2
3
4
5
6

PTMS A. Acid Acetone Propanol Water Ecorr


jdiss
Porosity
/ml
/ml
/ml
/ml
/ml /mV /A cm-2
/%
2.5
0
1.25
2
0.5 - 840
20.2
37.5
2.5
0.62
1.25
2
0.5 - 1151 0.55
1.02
2.5
1.25
1.25
2
0.5 - 1130 0.0008 0.0015
2.5
1.87
1.25
2
0.5 - 1130 0.06
0.11
2.5
2.49
1.25
2
0.5 - 1192 0.08
0.15
2.5
3.1
1.25
2
0.5 - 1228
0.2
0.37
58

Fig. 3.1 shows the current density-potential plots of uncoated and coated aluminum alloy
samples after heating at 573 K for 150 min. This Figure can be used to estimate an amount
of acetic acid which is required to add to sol-gel solution. Comparing the dissolution
current density (jdiss) of uncoated sample (53.9 A cm-2), it can be seen from Fig. 3.1 that
sol 3 (addition 1.25 ml of AcAc) improves the porosity of the coating on aluminum alloy.
The dissolution current density of sol 3 is considered to be the lowest value (porosity =
0.0015 %). Whereas, the absence of acetic acid (sol 1) makes a thin coated layer easy to
corrode (porosity = 37.5 %).
0.1
0.01
1E-3
1E-4

j / A cm

-2

1E-5
1E-6
1E-7

uncoated
Sol 1
Sol 2
Sol 3
Sol 4
Sol 5
Sol 6

1E-8
1E-9
1E-10
1E-11
1E-12
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.1: Studying the effect of AcAc (ml) on the current density of PTMS-coated samples
in 0.05 M NaCl solution after heating for 150 min. at 573 K.

The relation between current density (jdiss) vs. amount of AcAc (ml) can be illustrated in
Table 3.1. In case of absence of AcAc the corrosion current density records the highest
value owing to on the large porosity.

59

3.1.1.2 Study the effect of Acetylacetone


Table 3.2 illustrates the effect of acetylacetone (A. Acetone) on the sol solution. Addition
of acetylacetone (> 1.25 ml) leads to the formation bulky material resulting in the films
with large porosity. So it is so easy for corrosive medium to penetrate the surface of coated
layer through porosity and react with the surface of aluminum alloy resulting in the
corrosion process.
Table 3.2: Different sols containing different amount of acetylacetone (A. Acetone).
Sol
7
8
9
10
11
12

PTMS A. Acid A. Acetone Propanol Water


/ml
/ml
/ml
/ml
/ml
2.5
1.25
0
2
0.5
2.5
1.25
0.62
2
0.5
2.5
1.25
1.25
2
0.5
2.5
1.25
1.87
2
0.5
2.5
1.25
2.49
2
0.5
2.5
1.25
3.1
2
0.5

jdiss
Porosity
Ecorr
/mV /A cm-2
/%
- 1197
- 1071
- 1127
- 1138
- 1151
- 1119

0.11
0.03
0.006
0.11
0.20
0.28

0.2
0.04
0.0013
0.2
0.4
0.4

Fig. 3.2 shows dissolution current density of sols 7-12 for PTMS-coated samples heat
treated at 573 K. the best result is concerted in sol 9, which obtained by adding 1.25 ml of
A. Acetone, which lead to decrease the porosity of coated thin layer.
0.1
0.01
1E-3
1E-4

j / A cm

-2

1E-5
1E-6
1E-7

uncoated
Sol 7
Sol 8
Sol 9
Sol 10
Sol 11
Sol 12

1E-8
1E-9
1E-10
1E-11
1E-12
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.2: The effect of A. Acetone (ml) on the current density of PTMS-coated samples in
0.05 M NaCl solution after heating for 150 min. at 573 K.

60

3.1.1.3 Study the effect of water-propanol


The effect of water-propanol on the porosity of thin film has also been investigated. Fig.
3.3 illustrates the relation between jdiss and EAg/AgCl for many sols 13-18 prepared with a
different amount of water : propanol. Fig. 3.3 shows the difference in dissolution current
density. Higher amount of water leads to enhancement of the porosity due to the higher
hydrolysis rate which prevents a highly cross-linked coating and results in the less
protection performance. Fig. 3.4 shows the jdiss of coated samples prepared using different
amounts of water and propanol (by volume). The amount of water added is optimized in
order to balance the hydrolysis and condensation reactions which in turn results in the
formation of thin coating with anti-corrosive characteristics. It is clear from Fig. 3.4 that
the sol comprising of water and propanol in 2 ml : 0.5 ml ratio, respectively, provides the
best protection.
0.1
0.01
1E-3
1E-4

j / A cm

-2

1E-5
1E-6
1E-7

uncoated
Sol 13
Sol 14
Sol 15
Sol 16
Sol 17
Sol 18

1E-8
1E-9
1E-10
1E-11
1E-12
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.3: Effect of water on the current density of PTMS-coated samples in 0.05 M NaCl
solution after heating for 150 min. at 573 K.

61

j /A cm

-2

0
0.0

0.5

1.0

1.5

2.0

2.5

water : propanol (by volume)

Fig. 3.4: Current densities at jdiss for sols (13-18) with different mounts (by volume) of
water : propanol immersed in 0.05 M NaCl after dried at 573 K for 150 min.

3.1.1.4 Study the effect of temperature


It is clear from Fig. 3.5 that temperature more than 573 K causes increases in current
density, which develops cracks in the thin coated film, thereby allowing chloride ions to
attack the surface of aluminum alloy. The drying temperature should be as low as possible
to prevent the coated layer from damage at the same time it should be high enough to
ensure optimal density and mechanical stability of the coating. From Fig. 3.6, the dried
sample at 573 K has the lowest dissolution current density which decreases the porosity of
coated layer. During sol-gel process, drying at high temperatures leads to the formation of
films with lower porosity and higher density. So, 573 K represents the optimum drying
temperature with the lowest porosity.

62

0.1
0.01
1E-3
1E-4

j / A cm

-2

1E-5
1E-6
1E-7

373 K
423 K
473 K
523 K
573 K
623 K
673 K

1E-8
1E-9
1E-10
1E-11
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.5: Effect of drying temperatures on PTMS-coated samples in 0.05 M NaCl solution
after heating for 150 min. at different temperatures.

1.8
1.6

1.41
1.4
1.2
1.0

j / A cm

-2

0.85

0.8
0.6
0.4
0.2

0.1

0.09

0.07

0.04

0.001

0.0
-0.2
350

400

450

500

550

600

650

700

Temperature (K)

Fig. 3.6: Effect of heating temperature on corrosion protection of PTMS-coated sample in


0.05 M NaCl after dried at different temperature for 150 min.

63

3.1.1.5 Film thickness and spin coating


Before coating, the samples were cleaned with ethanol and warm air to remove any
impurities from the surface. Films were deposited in a spin-coater at room temperature
with a syringe through a 0.45 m nylon filter to avoid any contamination. The sol was
deposited onto the rotating aluminum alloy samples as soon as the final spinning speed was
reached. The spinning speed and rotation time were optimized to produce the most
homogeneous and reproducible film. After spin time of 90 seconds, the best results have
been obtained. The films showed good coverage and a reproducible homogeneous surface.
The spinning speed was varied from 1000 to 5000 rpm (revolutions per minute) see the
relation between film thickness and spinning speed in Fig. 3.7. Lower speeds than 4000
rpm lead to formation of thick layers with more cracks. On other hand, using higher speed
as 5000 rpm lead to the removal of some parts of coated layer. Optimum speed 4000 rpm
was chosen which yielded the most reproducible and homogeneous films of all samples.
During the deposition process, the spin coater was kept covering to prevent the formation
of comets or irregularities on the sample surface [168]. Fig. 3.8 illustrates that spin time
doesn't have a major influence on the film thickness of anticorrosion coating layer.
240
220

220

Film Thickness / nm

200
180

174

160
140

133

120
100

88
76

80
60
1000

2000

3000

4000

5000

6000

Spin Speed / rpm

Fig. 3.7: Film thickness vs. spin speed for coated samples with PTMS after dried at 573 K
for 150 min.
64

240
220
200

Film Thicknes / nm

180
160
140
120

106

119

116

103

100

93

81
80
60
40
20
20

40

60

80

100

120

140

160

180

200

Spinning time / s

Fig. 3.8: Film thickness vs. rotating time for coated samples with PTMS after dried at 573
K for 150 min.

3.1.1.6 Film thickness and heat treatment


The samples coated with PTMS were studied by using a Nabertherm L3/11, LT9/12
Controller P320 furnace. Besides time and speed the heat treatment of the samples had to
be optimized, too. The drying time has a strong influence on the film thickness. During
first 60 min, as is clear from Fig. 3.9, there is a strong influence of the drying on the
thickness of the film coating. The thickness of anticorrosion coating layer became more
stable after 180 min, and doesn't change any more. It can be concluded from Fig. 3.10 that
the final film thickness is reached between 573 and 673 K and no further shrinking occurs.

65

170
160
150

143

Film thickness / nm

140
130

117

120
110

99.8

100

88.1

90
80

70.3

70
60
50
40
60

80

100

120

140

160

180

Drying time / min

Fig. 3.9: Film thickness vs. drying time for coated samples with PTMS after dried at 573 K.

140
130

120

Film thickness / nm

120
110

101
100

88.9

90

79.3
80
70
60
350

400

450

500

550

600

650

700

750

Drying temperature / K

Fig. 3.10: Film thickness vs. drying temperature for coated samples with PTMS after dried
for 150 min.

3.1.2 Potentiodynamic test


A comparison between uncoated aluminum alloy (7075) and coated sample with PTMS
was illustrated in Fig. 3.11. It is easy to see the highest dissolution current density (jdiss =
48.6 A cm-2) in case of uncoated samples comparing to samples coated with PTMS,
which have the lowest values (jdiss = 8 10-4 A cm-2). This is due to a good barrier of

66

coated layer with low porosity and good adhesion. So it is easy for aggressive chloride ions
to attack oxide layer of uncoated sample causing pitting and cracking corrosion.
0.1
0.01
1E-3
1E-4

j / A cm

-2

1E-5
1E-6
1E-7
1E-8
1E-9
1E-10

uncoated
PTMS

1E-11
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.11: Potentiodynamic test for uncoated and coated sample of aluminum alloy with
PTMS in 0.05 M NaCl solution after heat treatment at 573 K for 150 min.

3.1.2.1 Potentiodynamic with different electrolyte concentration


At constant pH = 7 both with uncoated (Fig. 3.12) and coated samples (Fig. 3.13), a change
of the concentration of NaCl from c=0.05 to 2.0 M leads to decreasing corrosion potential
(Ecorr) and increasing dissolution current density (jdiss) values. Figure 3.14a, b shows the
dependence of jdiss and Ecorr on concentration of NaCl. Relationships between dissolution
current density (jdiss) and corrosion potential (Ecorr) upon chloride ion concentration and
hydrostatic pressure have been examined elsewhere [169], and they are based on a shift of
the reaction equilibrium between aluminum and chloride ions on one hand and chloride
covered aluminum surface (and an electron released during this process) on the other hand.
Increase of chloride concentration results in a shift of the equilibrium and concomitant
changes of jdiss and Ecorr. The linear relationship in case of Ecorr can be represented by the
equation [170]:

67

0
Ecorr = E corr
+ 2.303 (RT/nF) log c

(57)

0
where Ecorr is corrosion potential, E corr
is the standard potential, R is universal gas constant

(8.314 10-3 kJ mol-1K-1), T is temperature in Kelvin, n is the number of electrons involved


in the corrosion reaction, F is Faraday constant (96485 C mol-1) and c is concentration of
chloride ions. The dependence of Ecorr on concentration is smaller in the case of samples
coated with PTMS than with uncoated samples of aluminum alloy AA7075 because
coating makes major parts of the metal surface inaccessible for chloride adsorption; the
reaction equilibrium addressed above is less affected. The percentage inhibition efficiency
was calculated using equation 58:
IE (%) = jun jco / jun 100

(58)

where, jun and jco are dissolution current density for uncoated and coated samples,
respectively. The results have been collected in Table 3.3.
10
1
0.1

j / A cm

-2

0.01
1E-3
1E-4
1E-5

0.05 M
0.5 M
1.0 M
1.5 M
2.0 M

1E-6
1E-7
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.12: Anodic polarization curves obtained with samples of uncoated AA7075 in solutions of NaCl of different concentrations at pH = 7.

68

0.1
0.01
1E-3
1E-4
1E-5

j / A cm

-2

1E-6
1E-7
1E-8

0.05 M
0.5 M
1.0 M
1.5 M
2.0 M

1E-9
1E-10
1E-11
1E-12
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.13: Anodic polarization curves obtained with samples of AA7075 coated with
PTMS after immersion in solutions of different concentrations of NaCl at pH =
7.
4

-900

(a)

(b)
-950

-1000

EAg/AgCl/ mV

j / A cm

-2

-1050
1

-1100
-1150

-1

-1200
-2

uncoated
PTMS

-1250

-3
-1.6

-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

0.2

-1300
-1.6

0.4

Log CCl- / -

uncoated
PTMS
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

0.2

0.4

0.6

log cCl- / -

Fig. 3.14: Dependency of dissolution current density jdiss (a) and corrosion potential Ecorr
(b) for uncoated and coated samples of AA7075 on the concentration of Cl ion

Table 3.3: Comparison between uncoated and coated with PTMS by using different
concentration of NaCl.
Log current density (A/cm2)
Inhibition
CNaCl
Efficiency
(IE %)
uncoated
PTMS
0.05 M
54.4
0.007
99.98
0.5 M
210
0.1
99.95
1.0 M
210
0.41
99.81
1.5 M
212
0.5
99.76
2.0 M
369
0.84
99.77

69

3.1.2.2 Potentiodynamic test with different pH values


Potentiodynamic polarization curves for AA7075 samples coated with PTMS obtained in
solutions of 0.05 M NaCl at pH values of 0.85, 3, 7, 10 and 12.85 with distinctly different
shapes are shown in Fig. 3.15. The dissolution current density in the neutral solution is the
lowest. Potentiodynamic curves have been obtained after immersion of coated samples
with PTMS in electrolyte solution with different pH. Results of potentiodynamic test of
treated samples of aluminum alloy with PTMS confirmed the results of weight loss
measurements. The coated sample with PTMS immersed in neutral solution (pH = 7)
showed the lowest dissolution current density (jdiss) which depicts that treatment offered
the best pitting corrosion resistance. On the other hand, samples immersed in electrolyte
solutions of acidic (pH = 0.85 and 3) and basic (pH = 10 and 12.85) showed resistance less
than immersed in neutral solution (pH = 7). This is due to the high concentration of
respective ions at acidic or basic pH, which attack the protective coating resulting in the
breakdown of the layer. It is found that corrosion potential (Ecorr) depends on pH values,
and becomes more negative with increasing pH (Fig. 3.15 and 3.16). It is also observed
that samples coated with PTMS have corrosion potential higher than uncoated at the same
pH. Fig. 3.17 illustrates the contact between pH and inhibition efficiency. The inhibition
efficiency is nearly stable at different pH values.

70

0.1

a)

0.01
1E-3

j / A cm

-2

1E-4
1E-5
1E-6
1E-7

pH = 0.85
pH = 3
pH = 7
pH = 10
pH = 12.85

1E-8
1E-9

-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.15: Polarization curves for samples of AA7075 coated with PTMS after immersion
in 0.05 M NaCl for 1 day.

-200

b)

uncoated
PTMS

-400

Ecorr / mV

-600

-800

-1000

-1200

10

12

14

pH / -

Fig. 3.16: Relationship between pH and Ecorr for PTMS-coated samples after immersion in
0.05 M NaCl for 1 day.

71

160
140

Inhibition Efficincy (IE %)

120

99.5

99.3
100

98.6

94.7

91.1

80
60
40
20
0
0

10

12

14

pH / -

Fig. 3.17: Inhibition efficiency for coated samples after immersion in electrolyte solution
with different pH.

3.1.2.3 Potentiodynamic study with different temperatures


DC polarization tests were conducted in a 0.05 M NaCl solution, in order to evaluate the
effect of elevated temperatures on the corrosion performance of uncoated and coated Al
alloy (AA7075). Fig. 3.18 and 3.19 displays dissolution current density (jdiss) values vs.
corrosion potential (Ecorr) for uncoated and coated samples. These figures illustrate, that the
rate of corrosion is high in case of uncoated compared to coated samples with PTMS.
Fig. 3.19 also presents the variations of cyclic potentiodynamic polarization at different
temperatures, and reveals a sharp increase in OCP and jdiss with increased temperature. The
relationship between logarithm of current density and temperature is shown in Fig. 3.20.
Fig. 3.21 illustrates the effect of temperature on inhibition efficiency of coated samples. It
demonstrates that the high efficiency of coated layer to protect aluminum alloy from
corrosion.

72

1
0.1
0.01

j / A cm

-2

1E-3
1E-4
1E-5

293 K
303 K
313 K
323 K
333 K

1E-6
1E-7
1E-8
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.18: Potentiodynamic curves for uncoated samples of aluminum alloy at different
temperatures.

0.01
1E-3
1E-4

j / A cm

-2

1E-5
1E-6
1E-7

293 K
303 K
313 K
323 K
333 K

1E-8
1E-9
1E-10
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/ V

Fig. 3.19: Potentiodynamic test for coated aluminum alloy with PTMS at different
temperatures.

73

220

uncoated
PTMS

200
180
160

j / A cm

-2

140
120
100
80
60
40
20
0
-20
295

300

305

310

315

320

325

330

335

340

Temperature / K

Fig. 3.20: Dissolution current density (jdiss) of uncoated and coated samples with PTMS in
solution of 0.05 M NaCl at different temperatures.

110

Inhibition Efficincy (IE %)

105

100

99.5

99.8

99.5

99.4

99.5

95

90

85

80
290

300

310

320

330

340

Temperatures / K

Fig. 3.21: Effect of temperature on inhibition efficiency of coated samples.

74

3.1.2.4 Potentiodynamic study with different pH and temperatures


The results of uncoated and coated samples with PTMS in electrolyte solutions of different
pH and temperatures are tabulated as collected in Table 3.4. This data illustrates that
uncoated samples were affected by immersion in solution of different pH at different
temperatures. Increasing the temperature and pH leads to cracking of the passive layer of
uncoated Al alloy, but in case of samples coated with PTMS the rate of corrosion is very
low compared to uncoated samples. It depends on thin film with a small porous which
plays an important role to prevent attack of chloride ions.

Table 3.4: Studying the effect of different concentrations and different temperatures on the
rate of corrosion in case of uncoated and coated samples.
Temperatures (K)
293
313
333

uncoated
jdiss / A cm-2
pH = 0.85 pH = 12.85
2212
479
2942
1222
92.2
2122

coated with PTMS


jdiss / A cm-2
pH = 0.85 pH = 12.85
12.2
22.1
...9
227
79.2
927

3.1.3 Linear polarization resistance for samples coated with PTMS


Linear polarization resistance values of uncoated and coated samples in electrolyte solutions of NaCl with different pH-values (0.85, 3, 7, 10 and 1.85) are shown in Table 3.5.
The Tafel extrapolation method [55] was used to calculate the corrosion potential (Ecorr),
pitting potential (Epitt) and corrosion current density (jcorr). According to Table 3.5 with increasing pH-value the uncoated sample shows an increase of jcorr (corresponding to the
decrease Rp) reaching the highest value at pH = 7, beyond this value the change goes into
the opposite direction. Values are lowest in acidic and basic mediums. The values of Ecorr
increase with pH continuously. The results of coated samples with PTMS demonstrate that,

75

the values of jcorr record lowest values compared to uncoated and Rp record highest values
compared with uncoated samples.

Table 3.5: Linear polarization results of uncoated and coated samples after immersion in
electrolyte solutions with different pH-values for 10 min.
pH
0.85
3
7
10
12.85

Ecorr
/mV
- 621
- 336
- 1010
- 1040
- 1340

Uncoated
Epitt
jcorr
Rp103
-2
/mV /Acm /cm2
- 552
2010
0.06
- 278
50.7
1.38
- 600
34.4
1.68
- 591
36.5
1.36
- 1269
1560
0.01

76

Ecorr
/mV
- 369
- 261
- 870
- 663
- 1212

Epitt
/mV
- 294
- 192
- 555
- 576
- 1095

PTMS
jcorr Porosity Rp103
/Acm-2 /%
/cm2
4.0
0.2
1
4.6
9.1
27
0.18
0.5
5214
1.87
5.1
600
46.3
4.5
2

3.1.4 Structural characterization of PTMS-coated samples


3.1.4.1 Scanning electron microscopy + Energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy
Fig. 3.22a-d represents the SEM images of the corroded surfaces of AA7075 samples
before and after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl solution for 1 day at neutral pH. It is observed
from SEM images that the uncoated sample was affected by immersion in 0.05 M NaCl.
Before immersion, the surface of uncoated AA7075 looks smooth without a presence of
cracks or pits. On contrary, after immersion of uncoated AA7075 the effect of NaCl is
visible on the surface. The surface was corroded by NaCl solution as indicated by white
big cavities visible on the surface after immersion (Fig. 3.22a-c). This might be due to the
breakdown of the aluminum oxide layer by the attack of chloride ions released from NaCl
solution. This allows progressively more chloride ions to penetrate through the barrier
oxide layer allowing pitting corrosion to occur. The situation in coated AA7075 is
completely different (Fig. 3.22c-d). It seems that coating process protected the surface of
AA7075 from corrosion by NaCl to some extent. The two images of coated AA7075 are
almost the same before and after immersion in NaCl solution. No visible effect of Cl - ions
can be noticed when comparing Fig. 3.22c and 3.22d. So PTMS is effective in reducing the
number of pits. The anticorrosion effect of coating might be due to the uniform distribution
of holes on the surface of AA7075. The formation of holes on the surface coating might be
attributed to self assembly of the macromolecular structures during the hardening process.
There is no sign of cavities, pin holes, or any other type of surface defects can be observed
after immersion.

77

Fig. 3.22: SEM images of: a) uncoated AA7075 sample before immersion, b) uncoated
sample AA7075 after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for 1 day, c) coated AA7075
sample with PTMS before immersion and d) coated AA7075 sample with
PTMS after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for 1 day.

Table 3.6: EDX results for uncoated and coated AA7075 samples before and after
immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for 1 day.
Samples

uncoated

coated
with
PTMS

before
immersion
after
immersion
before
immersion
after
immersion

Al
O
Na
Mg
Cu
Zn
Fe
Si
weight weight weight weight weight weight weight weight
%
%
%
%
%
%
%
%
88.58

1.57

3.48

3.47

0.70

2.20

0.00

0.00

65.41 27.39

2.15

2.37

0.61

1.76

0.31

0.00

53.44 23.16

1.20

3.52

0.00

0.00

1.80

16.87

72.54 11.32

3.45

3.31

0.00

1.77

1.42

6.18

EDX results displayed in Table 3.6 explain that coating process for AA7075 samples plays
an important role in retarding the corrosion process and hence improving the overall
localized corrosion resistance. The interpretation of this table can be divided into three
comparisons:

78

First comparison of EDX results of uncoated AA7075 before and after immersion shows
loss in wt. % of Al from 88.58 (before) to 65.41% (after). This decrease in wt. % is mainly
due to the formation of aluminum oxide. Formation of this oxide leads to increase in wt. %
of oxygen to be 27.39% instead of 1.57% observed before immersion. This was confirmed
by calculating the difference in wt. % between Al and oxygen before and after immersion.
So, the small loss in weight is observed e.g. 23.17 % in case of Al and 25.8 % for oxygen.
The second comparison of EDX results of coated AA7075 before and after immersion in
NaCl solution shows interesting results. After immersion, weight % of Al increased on the
expense of oxygen and silicon, which showed decrease in wt. %. This gives us impression
that chloride ions attacked the coated layer which constituted from silicon and oxygen and
dissolute them leading to reduction in their wt. %. So reduction in wt. % of silicon and
oxygen leads to an increase of wt. % of Al comparing to the total weight of the sample.
The third and last comparison of EDX results of uncoated and coated AA7075 before and
after immersion emphasized our previous explanation. Before immersion wt. % of Al is
higher in case of uncoated sample, this is expected due to removal of Silicon and small wt.
% of oxygen (elements of coating layer). After immersion, coated sample showed an
increase in Al wt. %, while uncoated sample showed a decrease in wt. % of Al. This
behavior is mainly due to the presence of thin coated film which dissolutes and protects Al
from further corrosion.

3.1.4.2 Optical microscopic studies for samples coated with PTMS


Fig. 3.23 shows optical micrograph of the film formed upon the surface of coated and uncoated samples after immersion for 7 days in electrolyte solution (0.05 M NaCl).
Hemispherical pits with different size were grown throughout the surface of the uncoated
sample and around each pit a white corrosion product or white gelatinous mass found
accumulated as the result of the corrosion of the aluminum alloy matrix in the vicinity of

79

the precipitates. These micrographs clearly show that the damage caused by this type of
corrosion is accentuated with uncoated samples exposed to neutral solution.

Fig. 3.23: Optical microscopy: a) uncoated sample before immersion, b) uncoated sample
after immersion 0.05 M NaCl for 7 days, c) coated sample with PTMS before
immersion and d) coated samples with PTMS after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl
for 7 days.

3.1.4.3 Secondary ion mass spectroscopy


Fig. 3.24 shows a depth profile of the coating annealed at 573 K. The coating contains as
expected Si, H, C and O, but Al also. The slow rise of the signal due to aluminum starting
at about 2700 s sputtering time implies the presence of a mixed intermediate layer
containing both metal and species from the sol-gel coating. This may be caused by a
chemical reaction between the aluminum surface and the slightly acidic coating solution.
The overall signal growth may be due to a more dense coating at the bottom.

80

10

H
C
O
18
O
27
Al
28
Si
30
Si
13

10

16

10

intensity / s

-1

10

10

10

10

10

10

1000

2000

3000

4000

sputter time / s

Fig. 3.24: Depth profiles of AA7075 aluminum alloy coated with PTMS and heat-treated at
573 K.
3.1.4.4 X-ray photo electron spectroscopy
X-ray photoelectron spectra in Fig. 3.25 show the comparison between uncoated and
coated (PTMS) aluminum alloy (AA7075 dried at 573 K). The curve corresponding to
coated samples shows intensities of aluminum, silicone, oxygen and carbon. The K signal
of Si2s and Si2p are observed at around 152.2 eV and 99.2 eV, respectively. Whereas, no
signals are observed in case of uncoated samples. The signal of oxygen O1s is also
observable at around 532.3 eV which proves the formation of -Si-O-Si- bond on the
surface. The K signal of Al2s and Al2p are found to be of weaker intensity can be fitted
with one peak at low binding energy (118.5 eV and 73.0 eV respectively) [171,172].
90000

O1s

uncoated
coated

80000
70000

Intensity

60000

C1s

50000
40000

O-Auger C-Auger

Al2p
Al2s

30000
20000

Al2s
Al2p

10000
0
-200

Si2p Si2s

200

400

600

800

1000

1200

1400

1600

Bending energy / eV

Fig. 3.25: XPS overviews of uncoated and coated aluminum alloy samples.

81

In case of uncoated aluminum alloy samples, oxygen (O1s), carbon (C1s) and aluminum
(Al2s and Al2p) signals are observed. The K signal of strong intensity as Al2s and Al2p
can be clearly identified at high binding energy (118.5 eV and 73.0 eV, respectively)
which prove of aluminum metal. XPS spectrum samples coated with PTMS shows higher
intensity signals of Si2s and Si2p as compared to uncoated samples. Conversely, uncoated
sample reveals a higher intensity signal of Al2s and Al2p compared to the coated sample
(see Fig. 3.26).
200

11000

uncoated
coated with PTMS

180

Al2s

9000

Al2p

140

8000

Intensity

120

Intensity

uncoated
coated with PTMS

10000

160

100
80

7000
6000
5000

60

4000

40

3000

20

2000

0
62

64

66

68

70

72

74

76

78

80

82

84

86

88

1000

90

105

Binding energy / eV

108

111

114

117

120

123

126

129

Binding energy / eV

Fig. 3.26: XPS Al2p and Al2s curves of uncoated and coated aluminum alloy.

82

132

135

3.2 Comparison between phenyltrimethoxysilane (PTMS), phenyltriethoxysilane


(PTES) and tetraethoxysilane (TEOS) as different thin coated film
3.2.1 Potentiodynamic test after zero immersion time
The polarization curves of uncoated and coated samples for aluminum alloy in aqueous
electrolyte solution (0.05 M NaCl) are shown in Fig. 3.27. The pitting tendency of the
aluminum alloy can be determined by pitting potential (Epit). Pitting potential is the
potential at which the passive layer begins to break down at localized area, leading to
pitting. Epit can be determined from an anodic polarization curve as the potential at which
the current begins to rise sharply with increasing potential.
The difference between pitting potential (Epit) and the corrosion potential Ecorr represents
the passive domain for any materials or alloys and is used as a measure of the susceptibility
to pitting corrosion [173]. In the present study, the passivation ability can be measured by
taking the difference between pitting potential (Epit) and pitting corrosion (Ecorr). The
greater the difference between Epit and Ecorr the greater the passive range and hence, the
materials will be safe from corrosion.
0.1
0.01
1E-3
1E-4

J/Acm

-2

1E-5
1E-6
1E-7
1E-8
1E-9

uncoated
TEOS
PTES
PTMS

1E-10
1E-11
1E-12
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/V

Fig. 3.27: Potentiodynamic test for uncoated and coated aluminum alloy after immersion in
0.05 M NaCl.

83

From Fig. 3.27 the pitting breakthrough for aluminum alloy is observed for coated and
uncoated samples. The uncoated sample shows a higher corrosion current density and
lower corrosion potential than coated samples with PTMS as shown in Table 3.7. From
data in Table 7, the pitting corrosion resistance increases until records the highest values in
case of PTMS. The passivity domain of uncoated aluminum alloy in 0.05 M NaCl is 382
mV. In case of coated samples, the passivity domain gradually increases to be 391, 9.7 and
481 mV for TEOS, PTES and PTMS, respectively. The porosity (expressed as percentage
of uncoated electrode surface area) of the coating can be calculated from the values of
dissolution current density jdiss at E = EOCP + 50 mV (see Fig. 2.4) for uncoated and coated
samples according to: porosity = jdiss,coat / jdiss,uncoat 100 / %. Results are summarized in
Table 3.7. Samples coated with PTMS showed significantly lower porosities than those
coated with PTES and TEOS.

Table 3.7: Corrosion potentials (Ecorr), dissolution current densities (jdiss) and porosity
obtained from potentiodynamic polarization curves for aluminum alloys.
Ecorr
Epit
Epit Ecorr
jdiss
Porosity
Samples
/(mV) /(mV)
/(mV)
/A cm-2
/%
- 650
384
uncoated - 1032
57.2
100
- 1066
- 675
389
TEOS
6.6
11.5
PTES
- 1184
- 717
474
0.21
0.37
- 655
489
PTMS - 1136
0.0008
0.001

3.2.2 Potentiodynamic test after 1 day immersion time in case of Al alloy only
Potentiodynamic testing was carried out after immersion of aluminum alloy samples uncoated as well as coated with TEOS, PTES and PTMS in 0.05 M NaCl for 1 day. Fig. 3.28
for the uncoated sample illustrates a higher value of dissolution current density compared
to the one coated with PTMS. The results are listed in Table 3.8.

84

Table 3.8: Dissolution current densities (jdiss) and corrosion potentials (Ecorr) for uncoated
Al alloy and coated with TEOS, PTES and PTMS, after immersion 1 day in aqueous solution 0.05 M NaCl.
Samples of Al alloy
Ecorr,SCE/mV
jdiss/A cm-2
uncoated
- 1005
39.1
TEOS
- 564
5.8
PTES
- 868
4.1
PTMS
- 866
0.14

0.1
0.01
1E-3

j/Acm

-2

1E-4
1E-5
1E-6
1E-7

Uncoated
TEOS
PTES
PTMS

1E-8
1E-9
-1.4

-1.2

-1.0

-0.8

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0.0

EAg/AgCl/V

Fig. 3.28: Potentiodynamic curves for Al alloy uncoated and coated with TEOS, PTES and
PTMS after immersion in aqueous solution of 0.05 M NaCl for 1 day.

3.2.3 Optical microscopic studies for samples coated with TEOS, PTES and PTMS
Fig. 3.29 shows optical micrograph of the film formed on the surface of coated and uncoated samples after immersion for 14 days in 0.05 M NaCl solution at ambient
temperature. Fig. 3.29a illustrates that the surface of uncoated sample is completely
corroded. Hemispherical pits of different sizes grew throughout the surface of the samples
and around each pit a white corrosion product accumulated as the result of the corrosion of
the aluminum alloy matrix in the vicinity of the precipitates. These micrographs clearly

85

show that the damage caused by this type of corrosion is accentuated with uncoated
samples exposed to neutral solution.
On other hands, the rate of corrosion of coatings decreases in the following order: TEOS >
PTES > PTMS, as demonstrated by Fig. 3.29b and c. Consequently, the sample coated
with PTMS (Fig. 3.29d) has lower porosity and higher hydrophobicity than PTES and
TEOS, which also is in agreement with potentiodynamic test and contact angle
measurement respectively.

Fig. 3.29: Optical microscopy pictures of: a) uncoated Al alloy, b) coated with TEOS, c)
coated with PTES and d) coated with PTMS after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for
14 days.

3.2.4 Polarization resistance


All samples of uncoated and coated aluminum alloy were immersed in 0.05 M NaCl for 1
day to determine Rp. The uncoated sample had the lowest resistance 1.6103 cm2 because
of the small diameter of chloride ions permitting their penetration through the aluminum
oxide layer to the alloy surface. Conversely, the samples which were coated with PTMS
showed the best corrosion resistance (159103 cm2). Whereas, samples coated with PTES
and TEOS had resistance less than those of PTMS (13103 and 10103 cm2),
respectively.
86

3.2.5 Atomic force microscopy


Atomic force microscopic studies were carried out on the coatings to evaluate the surface
characteristics of the samples, for example, average roughness (Ra), root mean square
roughness (RMS) and 3-D image. AFM images imply a marked difference in surface
characteristics of samples coated with TEOS, PTES and PTMS after immersion in 0.05 M
NaCl for 15 days. It can be observed from Table 3.9 that sample coated with TEOS has the
highest values of Ra and RMS, owing to the high rate of corrosion compared to repassivation.
Fig. 3.30 reveals the 3-D image of TEOS which has more elevations resulting from
corrosion products.

Fig. 3.30: AFM image of coated sample with TEOS after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for
15 days.
The AFM image of the PTES coating (Fig. 3.31) does show less elevation than TEOS
coating as former coating has been treated for pitting corrosion. It indicates that the rate of
repassivation in case of PTES coating is not higher enough to protect aluminum alloy from
corrosion.

87

Fig. 3.31: AFM image of coated sample with PTES after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for 15
days.

The morphology of the PTMS coating is completely different from that of TEOS and
PTES as shown in Fig. 3.32. It can be noticed from Fig. 3.32 that coating system is
uniform and flat. So, atomic force microscopic studies reveal that PTMS coating presents
excellent barrier properties for aluminum alloy.

Fig. 3.32: AFM image of coated sample with PTMS after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for
15 days.

88

Table 3.9: Average roughness and root mean square for coated Al alloy samples before and
after immersion in 0.05 M NaCl for 15 days.
Coating
before
immersion
after
immersion
before
immersion
after
immersion
before
immersion
after
immersion

TEOS

PTES

PTMS

Ra
/nm

RMS
/nm

10.19

11.48

330

365.5

3.1

3.5

302

324.2

1.38

1.61

2.58

3.23

3.2.6 Contact angle measurements


There is a direct relationship between contact angle and hydrophobicity. In other words,
increasing the hydrophobicity increases the corrosion inhibition. Fig. 3.33 displays the
contact angle values for uncoated sample and samples coated with TEOS, PTES and
PTMS.
110
100
90

80.6

Contact angle / degree

80

70.89

84.1

73.4

70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0

uncoated

TEOS

PTES

PTMS

Samples

Fig. 3.33: Contact angle comparison between uncoated and various silane films on aluminum alloy.

89

Fig. 3.33 show that the contact angles of aluminum alloy coated with PTMS are 13.2, 10.7
and 3.5 degrees higher than uncoated sample and samples coated with TEOS and PTES,
respectively. This trend might be attributed to the fact that hydroxyl groups are easy to be
attracted by water through hydrogen bonding and have a hydrophilic nature. So, the more
hydroxyl groups bonded to silane, the more will be hydrophilicity of the coated film. The
hydrophilic film of TEOS leads to a poor corrosion resistance compared to the more
hydrophobic film of PTMS.

3.2.7 Infrared spectroscopy


The measured spectral frequencies for TEOS pure, TEOS sol and TEOS dried sol are
summarized in Table 3.10. IR spectra of TEOS pure, TEOS sol and dried sol are shown in
Fig. 3.34. In case of TEOS pure and sol TEOS, there are three peaks at around 2971.45,
2922.19 and 2885.25 cm1, which are assignable to CH3 asymmetric stretching, CH2
asymmetric stretching and CH3 strong, respectively. However, these peaks are not found in
the corresponding spectrum of sol-gel dried.

Fig. 3.34: FTIR for TEOS pure, TEOS sol and TEOS dried sol after heat treatment for 150
min at 573 K.
Peaks observed in the range of 1130 cm-1 1000 cm-1 indicate the presence of siloxane
linkages (Si-O-Si) obtained from condensation of both the silanes. Siloxane linkages to
90

aluminum (Si-O-Al) which improve the adhesion are also observed in the range 1000 cm-1
900 cm-1.

Table 3.10: FTIR for TEOS pure, TEOS sol and TEOS dried sol after heat treatment for
150 min at 573 K.
IR
/cm-1
Vibrational Assignment
TEOS
TEOS
TEOS
pure
sol
dried sol
3383.96 3313.33
(OH)
2971.45 2971.45
asy(CH3)
2922.19 2922.19
asy(CH2)
2885.25 2885.25
s(CH3)
1438.39
(CH3)
1413.76
CH2 wag (TEOS)
1391.03
SiOCH2CH3 (CH3 asymmetric stretch)
1290.63
SiOCH2CH3 (CH2 wag)
1253.69
(CH2)
1167.49
(CH2CH3) rock of SiOCH2CH3
1102.84
SiOCH2CH3 (Si-O asy. str.)
1088.91 109775
asy(Si-O-Si)
1047.43 1061.84
asy(Si-O-Si)
964.31
963.59
SiOCH2CH3 (Si-O asy. str.)
939.68
sy(C-C)
878.12
(CH3CH2-)
796.32
CH2 rock/SiO4 asy. str.
788.84
CH2 rock/SiO4 asy. str.
Abbreviations: s, strong; m, moderate; w, weak; v, very; sh, shoulder; , stretch; ,
deformation; , wag; t, twist; , rock.

Fig. 3.35 illustrates the IR spectra of PTES pure, PTES sol and PTES dried solid after heat
treatment for 150 min at 573 K.

91

Fig. 3.35: FTIR for PTES pure, PTES sol and PTES dried sol after heat treatment for 150
min at 573 K.

Table 3.11: FTIR for PTES pure, PTES sol and PTES dried sol after heat treatment for 150
min at 573 K.
IR
/cm-1
Vibrational Assignment
PTES
PTES
PTES
Pure
Sol
dried sol
3376.25 3559.89
-OH
3068.65
(CH) ring
2968.37 2968.37
(CH) ring
2922.19 2922.19
as(CH2)
2879.09 2879.09
s(CH3)
1615.83
(C=C) phenyl ring
1590.50 1590.50
(C=C) phenyl ring
1555.67
(C=C) phenyl ring
1536.68
(C=C) phenyl ring
1505.01
(C=C) phenyl ring
1479.68
(CH3)
1432.24
(CC) ring
1422.69
(CH) ring
1386.06
(CH) ring
1290.63
t(CH2)
1251.72
(CH2)
1167.44
(CC) ring + (CH) ring
---1131.40 1128.23
as(Si-O-Si)
1127.42
(ring)/(Si)
1102.79
a(SiOC)
1083.91
s(C-O)
1078.17
1071.24
(CH) ring
1045.91
(CH)
961.18
963.59
s(SiOC)
909.76
(CH) for CH, CH2, CH3

92

(CH) for CH, CH2, CH3


792.61
s(Si-O-Si)
788.79
(CC) + (ring)
739.53
741.95
(CH) ring
699.51
697.63
(CH) ring
665.96
s(Si-O)
659.30
s(Si-O-Si)
Abbreviations: s, strong; m, moderate; w, weak; v, very; sh, shoulder; , stretch; ,
deformation; , wag; t, twist; , rock.
878.10

Fig. 3.35 illustrates the IR spectra of PTES pure, PTES sol and PTES died sol after heat
treatment for 150 min at 573 K. The peaks observed at 1590.50 and 1555.67 cm-1 are
related to the (C=C) of the phenyl ring with little interaction with CH group. The peaks at
1486 cm-1 and 1423 cm-1 can be assigned to the ring vibrations involving C-C bonds,
which mix strongly with C-H groups [132]. The strong peaks at 784, 738 and 700 cm-1 are
also related to the C-C vibration of the phenyl ring (Fig. 3.35). The two strong bands at
about 1100 cm-1 and 960 cm-1 can be assigned to the Si-O-C stretching vibrations [133].
Decrease in the intensity of the later peaks during the sol-gel reaction indicates the
formation of Si-O-Si bonds. On the other hand, this peak does not appear during sol-gel
reaction. This weak band can be attributed to the SiOH vibration and its disappearance can
be related to the completion of condensation reaction. A similar assignment has been given
to the phenylsilanetriol [134]. The peak at 960 cm-1 is assigned to asymmetric stretching of
Si-O- in Si(OC2H5)3, it is a critical peak. In the case of dried sol-gel, the absence of the
band at 960 cm-1 indicates the completion of condensation reaction whereas the presence
of the broad band at 1000-1200 cm-1 indicates that the solid material comprises mostly of
Si-O-Si skeleton. The presence of other peaks (see Table 3.11) in dried gel has been related
to the residual phenyl group which is stable until 1173 K [132].
The three functional groups -Si(C2H5O)3 in PTES are the species taking part in the
reaction. These groups hydrolyze and form silanols (Si-OH) which further condense to
form a -Si-O-Si- network.
93

Fig. 3.36: Shows comparative IR spectra of pure, sol and PTMS dried sol coatings dried at
573 K for 150 min.

Table 3.12: FTIR for PTMS pure, PTMS sol and PTMS dried sol after heat treatment for
150 min at 573 K.
IR
/cm-1
Vibrational Assignment
PTMS
PTMS
PTMS
pure
sol
dried sol
3449.08
-OH
3382.59
(OH)
2961.48
asy(CH3 or CH2)
2939.31
asy(CH3)
2926.65
sy(CH3 or CH2)
2872.82
sy(CH3 or CH2)
2834.83
sy(CH3)
1650.66
(C=C) ring
1615.83
(C=C) ring
1587.34
1587.34
1588.13
(C=C) ring
1552.51
(C=C) ring
1482.85
(CH3)
1460.69
1460.69
1454.35
(C=C) ring + (CH), (OCH3)
1425.86
1425.86
1425.86
(C=C) ring + 6(CH)
1356.20
(CH)
1258.05
(CH)
1188.39
(CH) ring
---1125.34
1134.13
as(Si-O-Si)
1102.84
a(SiOC) ring
1077.57
(CH) ring
1061.74
(CH)
1042.74
(CH)
1029.06
(ring)+(C=C) ring
(C=C) ring
992.08
960.42
916.09
s(SiOC)
811.61
823.64
as(CH3)

94

---783.11
778.84
sy(Si-O-Si)
741.95
738.79
737
(CH) ring
697.63
694.46
697.14
(CH) ring
650.13
Disappeared Disappeared
Si-OH
Abbreviations: s, strong; m, moderate; w, weak; v, very; sh, shoulder; ,
stretch; , deformation; , wag; t, twist; , rock.

Fig. 3.36 shows the IR absorption spectra of pure, sol and PTMS dried sol. The peak
assignments for pure PTMS, PTMS sol and PTMS xerogel are given in Table 3.12.
Significant peaks of Si-O-Si and Si-O-Me which are also peculiar for the silane mixture are
observed. The presence of some OH bonds is indicated by the peak at the 3449.08 cm-1.
The O-CH3 asymmetric and symmetric stretching vibrations occur at 2939.31 and 2834.83
cm-1, respectively. These peaks are also indicative of the presence of the CH2 group in the
aliphatic chain of the organosilane. Peaks observed in the range of 1130 cm-1 1000 cm-1
affirm the presence of siloxane linkages (Si-O-Si) obtained from condensation of both the
silanes. Siloxane linkages to metal which improve the adhesion are also observed in the
range 1000 cm-1 900 cm-1. Some peaks around 950 cm-1 might also be accredited to
condensation reactions between silanol Si-OH and C-OH groups, which lead to Si-O-C
linkage. Peaks at 823.64 cm-1 are ascribed to CH3 vibrations of the methoxy groups.

3.2.8 Weight loss and inhibition efficiency


3.2.8.1 Weight loss after immersion for 1 day in different pH electrolyte solution
After 1 day of immersion in electrolyte solutions of different pH values, the samples of
known weight were rinsed with distilled water, and subsequently washed with ethanol
followed by drying in hot air. The samples were weighted again. The weight loss W of
the metal in the corrosive solution is:
W = W1 W2

(59)

95

where W1 and W2 are the weights of samples before and after exposure to the corrosive
solution, respectively. The inhibition efficiency (% IE) and the degree of surface coverage
() were calculated according to:
% IE = [1-(Wcoated/Wuncoated)]100

(60)

= [1 - (Wcoated/Wuncoated)]

(61)

The values of inhibition efficiency (IE %) obtained by weight loss method are shown in
Table 3.13. Inhibition efficiency in solutions at all pH-values increases in the following
order: TEOS < PTES < PTMS. The low efficiency of the TEOS-based coating may be due
to an increased solubility of the protective layer caused by formation of hydrogen bonds
between protons from water molecules and OH--groups on the Al surface facilitated by the
low hydrophobicity of this layer as compared to that of a PTES or - even more PTMSlayer [174,175].

Table 3.13: Weight loss data of samples in aqueous solution 0.05 M NaCl solution at
neutral, acidic and alkaline pH, after 1 day immersion at ambient temperature.
Samples uncoated TEOS/
/mg cm-2 mg cm-2
pH
0.85
307
15
7
10
4
12.85
555
65

IE
PTES/ IE
PTMS/ IE
mg cm-2
mg cm-2

/%
/%
/%
95 0.95 10
96 0.96
98 0.98
6
60 0.60
70 0.70
90 0.90
3
1
88 0.88 60
89 0.89
98 0.98
12

3.2.8.2 Weight loss after immersion for 7 days in 0.05 M NaCl


In a second test run with immersion time 7 days in neutral 0.05 M NaCl solution, the
difference in weight is shown in Fig. 3.37 were obtained. It is clear from the figure that
sample coated with PTMS has the lowest weight loss values compared to PTES, TEOS and
uncoated samples, respectively.

96

50

uncoated
TEOS
PTES
PTMS

45

- weight loss / mg cm

-2

40

30

23
20

14
10

10

0
After 7 days

Fig. 3.37: Weight loss as a function of immersion time in a solution of 0.05 M NaCl at pH
7 after immersion for 7 days.
Table 3.14: Weight loss data of uncoated and coated samples after immersion in 0.05 M
NaCl for 7 days at ambient temperature.
Samples
uncoated
TEOS
PTES
PTMS

W/mg
94
23
14
10

Corrosion rate/mpy
54.5
27.9
16.9
12.1

Table 3.14 illustrates that the corrosion rate is decreasing with the weight loss until reaches
to the lowest value for PTMS-coated sample.

97

Summary and Conclusion


The sol-gel coating was successfully applied on aluminum alloy AA7075. The sol was
prepared from silanes; water; stabilizer; alcohol as a solvent and acid as a catalyst. The aim
of the work was to optimize the sol composition and the application parameters to reach a
protective dense sol-gel film on aluminum substrates. The conclusion of the work can be
described as follows:

The role of the silane structure


The effect of the silane structure on sol-gel films was investigated. Sol-gel film prepared
from phenyltrimethoxysilane (PTMS) sol showed the best barrier property on aluminum
alloy, this result can be attributed to high hydrophobic of this compound due to phenyl
group in the structure of the silane in agreement with results reported elsewhere [176].
However, the sol-gel films prepared from tetraethoxysilane (TEOS) showed low corrosion
protection which can be attributed to the formation of non-dense sol-gel film, the corrosive
solution penetrated through defects of the non-dense film and corrosion process occurred at
the surface of substrate.

The effect of the acid as a catalyst


Acetic acid was added to the sol as a catalyst to accelerate the hydrolysis process; the best
result was obtained by adding 1.25 ml of acetic acid. Excess amount of catalyst led to
degradation of the corrosion protective layer of sample which can be related to the
dissolution of aluminum oxide at the aluminum substrate surface, and low adhesion of solgel film is obtained. Whereas adding a small amount of acetic acid i.e., less than 1.25 ml
showed low corrosion of the aluminum sample coated with sol-gel film, this result can be

98

explained in terms of low hydrolysis of the silane at moderate pH values as a consequence


of non cross-linked film.

The cross-linking of the sol-gel film

The heat treatment of sol-gel film was needed to obtain cross-linked sol-gel film
structure. During heat treatment, alkoxy (OR) and hydroxyl (OH) groups were
condensed to form the structure of the sol-gel film. The best corrosion protection of
aluminum sample coated with sol-gel film was obtained by teat treatment at 300 C
for 2.5 hours. Longer heat treatment period did not show an improvement in the
barrier properties of the film. Moreover, the heat treatment period of the sol-gel film
less than 2.5 hours showed low corrosion, this result can be accredited to low crosslinking of the sol-gel film.
The heat treatment temperature at 300 C had an effect on microstructure and
mechanical property of the aluminum alloy. Heat treatment of sol-gel film at lower
temperatures will be the aim of my future work.

Characterization of the sol-gel film


The characterization of the aluminum sample coated with sol-gel film was carried out by
electrochemical method in 0.05 M NaCl solution. The effect of pH on the behaviour of the
coated samples was investigated. The experiments showed that the sol-gel film performed
as a barrier layer which hindered the effect of the corrosive solution (acid or base) on the
aluminum substrate. While, the uncoated aluminum samples demonstrated high corrosion
rate in the corrosive media, and consequently, pitting corrosion was observed.

99

At 0.85 pH of NaCl solution, the corrosion current density was 2010 A/cm2 for the
uncoated aluminum sample, this value was 500 times less than that for the aluminum
samples coated with sol-gel film prepared from PTMS sols, this result indicated high
barrier property of the sol-gel film in chloride solution. In addition, uncoated aluminum
sample showed low stability in basic solution due to dissolution of aluminum oxide at the
aluminum substrate surface. In case of NaCl solution with pH 12.85, the corrosion
protection of the aluminum sample coated with sol-gel film is 346 times higher than the
uncoated aluminum sample; this result can be attributed to the stability of sol-gel film in
basic solutions.
The conclusion can be drawn that the barrier property of sol-gel films hindered the effect
of the corrosive solution on the aluminum substrates. The sol-gel film was stable in
chloride solution at low and high pH values.

X-Ray photoelectron spectroscopy


The sol-gel films were characterized by XPS to identify the compounds in the film. For the
aluminium samples coated with sol-gel film, the K signal of Si2s and Si2p spectra and
weaker intensities as Al2s and Al2p can be clearly identified at low binding energy. The
signal of oxygen O1s spectrum was also observable around 532.3 eV which indicated
formation of silicon dioxide at the surface of aluminum alloy. Presence of Al2s and Al2p
are proved that there was intermediate layer containing both metal and species from the
sol-gel coating. The uncoated sample showed oxygen, carbon, Al2s and Al2p spectra
which indicated the presence of aluminum oxide layer.

100

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109

Selbstndigkeitserklrung
Hiermit erklre ich, da ich die vorliegende Arbeit selbstndig und nur unter Verwendung
der angegebenen Literatur und Hilfsmittel angefertigt habe.

Chemnitz, den 30.08.2011

M.Sc. Ahmed Younis

110

Curriculum Vitae
Personal Information
First name:

Ahmed

Family name:

Younis

Date of Birth:

01.03.1979

Birth place:

Cairo/Egypt

Nationality:

Egyptian

Current Address:

Theaterstr. 41 - 09111 Chemnitz - Germany

E-mail:

Dr_ahmedabdee@yahoo.com

Education
1997-2001:

B.Sc. Special Chemistry, Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt.

2001-2002:

Pre-master, Organic Chemistry, Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt.

2002-2003:

Researcher Assistant, Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt.

2003-2005:

Researcher Assistant, National Institute of Standard, Lab of Fire and


Explosion Protection (FEP).

2002-2005:

M.Sc. Organic Chemistry, Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt.

5/2005-11/2007:

Assistant Researcher, National Institute of Standard (NIS), Giza,


Egypt.

01/2008-07/2010:

Ph.D. Student, Institute of Analytical Chemistry, TU-Darmstadt,


Germany. Supervisor: Prof. Dr. W. Ensinger.

since 09/2010:

Ph.D. Student, Institute of Chemistry, TU-Chemnitz, Germany.


Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Rudolf Holze.

111

Work experience
05/08/2000-04/09/2000: Training in Cairo Medicine Company, Production Sector.
22-23/2/2004:

Training Course in "Protection of Fair and Explosion Ricks


in Industry.

06/11/2005-10/11/2005: Training Course in "Temperature Measurements".


05/01/2006-23/01/2006: International Computer Driving License "ICDL" (IT
Windows - Word - Excel - PowerPoint - Access - Internet)
from Programming Center, Faculty of Engineering, Cairo
University.
19/11/2006-29/03/2007: Germany Speaking Course (400 hours) in Goethe Institute,
Egypt, Giza.

Publications and Conferences


1- A.A. Younis, M. Yekehtaz, S. Ayata, M.M.B. El-Sabbah, A.M. Naser, F. Sittner,
S. Flege, W. Ensinger, Evaluation of the corrosion protection performance of
silane-based sol-gel nanocoatings on light metals presented at the 29th Corrosion
Mitigation and Surface Protection Conference, Alexandria, Egypt, December 14
16, 2010.
2- A.A. Younis, M.M.B. El-Sabbah, and R. Holze, J. Solid State Electrochem, DOI:
10.1007/s10008-011-1476-7, Online First.

112