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Enhancing corrosion resistance of zinc-filled protective coatings using conductive polymers

Miroslav Kohl, Andréa Kalendová, and Eva Schmidová

Faculty of Chemical Technology, Institute of Chemistry and Technology of Macromolecular Materials, University of Pardubice, Pardubice, Czech Republic



Abstract: Organic coatings containing zinc are amply used for the protection of metals, particularly steel structures. Ways to reduce the zinc content in the coating materials are sought for environmental and financial reasons. Our previous work (Kohl, Prog Org Coat 77:512–517, 2014; Kohl and Kalendová, Mater Sci Forum 818: 171–174, 2015a) suggested that one of the options consists in the use of conductive polymers in the formulation of the zinc coatings. The benefits of conductive polymers include nontoxicity, high stability, electric conductivity and redox potential. Previously we focussed on the effect of conductive polymers added to the organic coatings so as to complete the zinc volume concentration to 67%. The anticorrosion efficiency of the organic coatings was found to improve with increasing polyaniline phosphate or polypyrrole concentrations. Zinc content reduction in the system, however, did not attain more than 5%. The present work focusses on systems where the organic coatings are prepared with zinc having a pigment volume concentration PVC = 50%. Zinc content reduction in the system attains up to 20%. This work examines the mechanical and anticorrosion properties of the organic coatings with reduced zinc contents. The present work was devoted to the feasibility of using of conductive polymers in the formulation of coatings with reduced zinc contents. The conductive polymers included polyaniline, polypyrrole and poly(phenylenediamine); these were synthesised and characterised using physico-chemical methods. Polyphenylenediamine as a potential corrosion inhibitor has not been paid adequate attention so far. Subsequently, organic coatings with reduced zinc contents and containing the pigments at 0.5, 1 and 3% volume concentrations were formulated. The coatings were subjected to mechanical tests and accelerated corrosion tests to assess their mechanical and corrosion resistance. The corrosion resistance of the organic coatings was also studied by linear polarisation. The results of the mechanical tests, accelerated corrosion tests and linear polarisation measurements indicate that the organic coating properties get affected by the conductive polymer type as well as by the pigment volume concentration. The important finding is that the use of conductive polymers in coatings with reduced zinc contents was beneficial in all cases.

Keywords: Coating; Corrosion; Conductive polymers; Zinc

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1007/s11696-016-0054-y


Chemical Papers 71 (2) 409–421 (2017)

Monday, February 06, 2023

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