Published for Firgee Engineering
Today, we have seen a lot of steel fabrication works have been halted. This is due to weak demand from commodity market. Particularly oil and gas sector. This industry previously was commanding large amount of steel fabrication works. Oil platform for instance require to have around 20,000 metric ton of steels to erect a Central Processing Platform, CPP for any typical megastructure in offshore world.
Steels plays a vital role in our daily life. Without their presence, human race may not be able to progress holistically. This is true to our reliance on energy! Our thirst for energy may require additional facilities to be built. Therefore the needs for steel is forecasted to be on the high side for years to come in developing country like Malaysia.
What is steel?
Steels are iron and carbon alloys that may contain appreciable concentrations of other alloying elements . However, in this alloy, iron is present in a greater quantity. You can add various other metals to steel so as to produce alloys that have different properties. For example, if chromium is added to steel, stainless steel is the product.
Where does the iron came from?
According to Islamic scripture, Al-Quran from Surah Al- Hadid verse 25 it says:
We have already sent Our messengers with clear evidences and sent down with them the Scripture and the balance that the people may maintain [their affairs] in justice. And We sent down iron, wherein is great military might and benefits for the people, and so that Allah may make evident those who support Him and His messengers unseen. Indeed, Allah is Powerful and Exalted in Might.
Based on the above statement, it does clearly define that iron is not originally reside on our planet, Earth! It is originated from outside world. That the reason why corrosion occur on iron whenever it was exposed to the environment. It may be analogise to ice cube inside the fridge. As you place the ice cube outside it suppose environment it will melt. So does iron but it is not appropriate to call melting. We called it corrosion.
How does corrosion occur?
All metals have a tendency to corrode with some corroding more easily than others. Metals are extracted from the ores. Production of these metals from their ores requires energy. Certain environments offer opportunities for these metals to recombine and revert to their lower energy states. Thus corrosion can be described as extractive metallurgy in reverse 
What factors initiate corrosion?
In order for corrosion to happen, several critcal factor must be met . There are as follows:
- Anode – anodic side on the metal’s surface
- Cathode – cathodic side on the metal’s surface
- Electrolyte – in contact with both anode and cathode (provides path for ionic conduction)
- Electrical – connection between anode and cathode (provides path for the flow of electron)
- Materials Science and Engineering, William Callister
- Corrosion Engineering, Mars G. Fontana
- API 571: Damage Mechanism Affecting Fixed Equipment in the Refining Industry