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Corrosion Fundamentals

Uniform Corrosion

This is also called general corrosion. The surface effect produced by most direct chemical attacks (e.g., as by an acid) is a uniform etching of the metal. On a polished surface, this type of corrosion is first seen as a general dulling of the surface and, if allowed to continue, the surface becomes rough and possibly frosted in appearance. The discoloration or general dulling of metal created by its exposure to elevated temperatures is not to be considered as uniform etch corrosion. The use of chemical-resistant protective coatings or more resistant materials will control these problems.

While this is the most common form of corrosion, it is generally of little engineering significance, because structures will normally become unsightly and attract maintenance long before they become structurally affected. The facilities shown in the picuture below show how this corrosion can progress if control measures are not taken.

Uniform Corrosion of Structural Steel