Erosion-corrosion behaviour of Zirconia WC-6Co, WC-6Ni and SS316

Andrews, N. and Giourntas, L. and Galloway, A. M. and Pearson, A. (2015) Erosion-corrosion behaviour of Zirconia WC-6Co, WC-6Ni and SS316. International Journal of Refractory Metals and Hard Materials, 48. pp. 229-237. ISSN 0263-4368

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The current study investigates a ceramic, two cermets and a metal under solid-liquid impingement with 3.5% NaCl and 150mg/l hydraulic fracturing sand at two extreme angles of impact, 90° and 20°. The materials tested were Zirconia, sintered WC-6Co, sintered WC-6Ni and SS316. Each material was exposed to a testing regime using re-circulating impinging jet apparatus with a velocity of 19m/s and one hour duration. The electrochemical properties of the materials were investigated in-situ through anodic and cathodic polarisation and application of cathodic protection. Post experimental analysis of the degraded surface was completed using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and Optical 3D Imaging. Zirconia exhibited a brittle response to erosion-corrosion testing with the mass loss at 90° being fifty times greater than the negligible mass loss at 20°. WC-6Co and WC-6Ni both outperformed SS316 under all solid-liquid impingement erosion-corrosion testing regimes. WC-6Ni exhibited slightly better erosion-corrosion resistance over WC-6Co at both 90° and 20°. SS316 had the best corrosion resistance and showed passivation during anodic polarisations in solid-liquid impingement conditions. The nickel binder increased the corrosion resistance of WC-6Ni over WC-6Co. Cathodic protection was successfully applied on sintered WC-6Co and SS316 isolating the key components of erosion-corrosion.