March 29, 2023
Journal Article

One dimensional wormhole corrosion in metals


Corrosion is a ubiquitous failure mode of materials. Often, the progression of localized corrosion is accompanied by the evolution of porosity in materials previously reported to be either three dimensional or two-dimensional. However, using new tools and analysis techniques, we have realized that a more localized form of corrosion, which we call 1D wormhole corrosion, has previously been miscategorized in some situations. Using electron tomography, we show multiple examples of this 1D and percolating morphology. To understand the origin of this mechanism in a Ni-Cr alloy corroded by molten salt, we combined energy-filtered four-dimensional scanning transmission electron microscopy and ab initio density functional theory calculations to develop a vacancy mapping method with nanometer-resolution, identifying a remarkably high vacancy concentration in the diffusion-induced grain boundary migration zone, up to 100 times the equilibrium value at the melting point. Deciphering the origins of 1D corrosion is an important step towards designing structural materials with enhanced corrosion resistance.

Published: March 29, 2023


Yang Y., W. Zhou, S. Yin, S.Y. Wang, Q. Yu, M.J. Olszta, and Y. Zhang, et al. 2023. One dimensional wormhole corrosion in metals. Nature Communications 14, no. 1:Art. No. 988. PNNL-SA-181843. doi:10.1038/s41467-023-36588-9