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(ICASE) Thermal aging and degradation of epoxy coatings at oxidised interfaces


Project Description

Project description Corrosion under insulation (CUI) is a major problem at many industrial sites, commonly occurring in steel process plants and pipework operating at high temperatures. The aggressive environment established under insulation (temperatures typically in the range of 50 -175°C and moist conditions due to water absorbed by or collected in the insulation) lead to severe corrosion, which often goes undetected leading to catastrophic failures with loss of containment. Protective coatings on the external surfaces of steel equipment play a vital role in preventing this problem, and the efficacy of these coatings ultimately determine the performance lifetime. In service, exposure to the extreme environments is known to result in the accelerated deterioration of the protective coatings themselves.

This research will examine the hypothesis that local polymeric oxidation in the interphase region adjacent to metallic substrates and pigments influences interfacial adhesion, coating integrity and overall corrosion protection performance. We will analyse fundamental aspects of the oxidative deterioration mechanism in both model resins and industrial epoxy-amine coatings, in environments that are representative of CUI service conditions. The project will use novel analytical tools of high spatial resolution, in particular sub-diffraction vibrational spectroscopy with resolutions of < 100 nm (AFM-IR).

Sustainable Coatings by International Design (SusCoRD) is a multi-disciplinary project which aims to, for the first time, connect a detailed scientific understanding of the mechanisms of coatings failure with state-of-the-art-machine learning to deliver a framework for the optimisation of protective coatings and nanocomposite materials. The project is a collaboration between the Universities of Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool and our industrial partner AzkoNobel.

Informal applications can be made to Stuart Lyon ( )

Funding Notes

Admissions qualifications / requirements. Applicants should have or expect to achieve at least a 2.1 honours degree in Materials Science, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Physics or a related discipline.

This is a fully-funded PhD project with our industrial partner AzkoNobel.

How good is research at The University of Manchester in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Metallurgy and Materials?
Metallurgy and Materials

FTE Category A staff submitted: 44.00

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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