ISSN 2305-6894

Review on the microbiologically influenced corrosion and the function of biofilms

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1 Institute of Materials and Environmental Chemistry, Research Centre for Natural Sciences, Budapest, Hungary
2 Óbuda University, Faculty of Light Industry and Environmental Engineering, Budapest, Hungary

Abstract: The microbiologically/microbially influenced corrosion (MIC) is a special type of corrosion; in this case the microorganisms by their presence and aggressive metabolites alter the processes on solid surfaces via electrochemical and chemical reactions. When microorganisms are present in most cases the degradation of metals or alloys happens by microbes embedded in biofilms and by their excreted metabolites (e.g. acids), macromolecules (with complexing ability) and by other molecules that can form insoluble precipitates; all these reactions increase the deterioration. The paper summarizes the most important characteristics of the MIC, mainly the so-called biocorrosion of metals and alloys. Not only the chemical and electrochemical processes, but the roles of the corrosion relevant microorganisms in the deteriorating processes, as well as the information about the mechanisms of the MIC worked out in the past and in the very last period are discussed. The most important (aerobic, anaerobic, slime former, acid producer etc.) microorganisms, their nutrient requirements and the formation and role of biofilms are presented, characterized and discussed, as well as the influence of biofilms on the MIC is also demonstrated. The impact of metals on the MIC is also discussed. The history of the research on MIC from its discovery till the 21th century will demonstrate the enormous work that allowed the understanding of this special type of corrosion as well as its mechanism and the role of the biofilm in MIC. The paper will expose the reactions that go on between the slimy layer (that surrounds the microorganisms even in planktonic form) and the metal surface. The mostly used techniques to visualize what on the surface happens and to measure the change in the current density/corrosion potential and in the corrosion rate due to microbial action are also summarized and in all cases the advantages and disadvantages of all methods are discussed.

Keywords: MIC, history of MIC, biofilms, biofouling, biocorrosion, corrosion relevant microorganisms, instrumentations, techniques for evaluation of MIC

Int. J. Corros. Scale Inhib., , 9, no. 1, 1-33 PDF (932 K)
doi: 10.17675/2305-6894-2020-9-1-1

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