Zn and Zn-Sn alloy coatings with and without chromate layers. Part I: Corrosion resistance and structural analysis

L. Sziráki, Á Cziráki, Z. Vértesy, V. Kiss, L. Ivanova, G. Raichevski, S. Vitkova, Ts Marinova

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The aqueous corrosion resistances of Zn and Zn-Sn (approximately 20 wt % Sn) electrodeposits, passivated by immersion in chromating solution with different ratios of Cr(VI) to activating ions, are compared. The electrochemical behaviour of various chromated and nonchromated coatings were investigated in deaerated 0.5 mol dm-3 Na2SO4/pH 5 solution using a.c. impedance and d.c. polarization techniques. The polarization curves revealed that the chromate layers influence both the cathodic and anodic reactions. The corrosion rate of each specimen decreases with time due to the accumulation of corrosion products. The dark yellow (DY) chromate film on the Zn-Sn alloy and the iridiscent yellow (IY) on Zn yields the best protective ability in agreement with the assessment of prolonged salt spray chamber tests. These chromate layers resembling cracked mud become permeable to the electrolyte after immersion and, as a consequence of the transformation and the leaching of certain Cr compounds, a very porous agglomerate of corrosion products forms. The morphology and structure of dark yellow chromated Zn-Sn alloy was also investigated by transmission electromicroscopy (TEM) and scanning electronmicroscopy with microprobe (SEM/EDS) analyses before and after corrosion. The depth profile of the corroded surface chemical composition was determined by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)927-937
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Applied Electrochemistry
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1999


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Electrochemistry
  • Materials Chemistry

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