Civil Structures; Corrosion effects on Bridge Construction
Bridges are structures that are not only subject to external forces, stress and strain of a material and mechanical processes, but civil structures are also may undergo chemical processes. One process that poses a great threat to metallic structures or metallic frameworks is Corrosion.
Corrosion is the degradation of a material by chemical means. Every material is not subjected to corrosion and is a commonly used term among metals than any other material. It is commonly mistaken that metals are the only materials to corrode but, ceramics and polymers also deteriorate due to corrosion.
Corrosion is caused through two main driving forces, either direct chemical attack, or electrochemical corrosion. Direct chemical attack is the corrosion that results in exposing a bare surface to gaseous or liquid agents. Electrochemical corrosion is corrosion of which occurs through electrolytic processes such as electroplating. Electrochemical corrosion is caused through the complete transfer of electrons between metals and therefore as the transfer continues the metal donating the electrons begins to deteriorate. It begins to deteriorate as the electrostatic attraction between the electron cloud and metal ions is lost as all electrons have been lost. (This is the fundamental process occurring in electroplating)
To understand electrochemical corrosion, the complete transfer of electrons needs to be completely understood. The donation and acceptance of electrons is known as the oxidation and reduction process respectively. This is the key behind electrochemical corrosion as complete electron transfer is compulsory.
To undergo corrosion a bridge must be in the right environment. Not that it is a most promising result; most bridges are indeed in the right environment that allows for corrosion. An environment that clearly allows for corrosion is an area simply exposed to sunlight and air. Unfortunately bridges...