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Understanding Corrosion and Cathodic Protection of Reinforced Concrete Structures

by

Steven F. Daily

Corrpro Companies, Inc.

 

Corrosion of Steel in Concrete
The corrosion process that takes place in concrete is electrochemical in nature, very similar to a battery. Corrosion will result in the flow of electrons between anodic and cathodic sites on the rebar. For corrosion to occur four basic elements are required:

  • Anode - site where corrosion occurs and current flows from.
  • Cathode - site where no corrosion occurs and current flows to.
  • Electrolyte - a medium capable of conducting electric current by ionic current flow (i.e. soil, water or concrete).
  • Metallic Path - connection between the anode and cathode, which allows current return and completes the circuit.

Reinforcing steel in concrete normally does not corrode because of the formation of a passive oxide film on the surface of the steel due to the initial corrosion reaction. The

Southern Cathodic Protection Company

If you are an owner of a condominium that is more than 10 years old and located near salt water, you have probably incurred special assessments for repairs to your building for cracked or spalled concrete due to corrosion. If you haven't experienced the restoration process, you will most likely be introduced to costly concrete restoration in the immediate future because the corrosion of reinforcing steel in concrete is inevitable. Major concrete restoration of buildings such as condomoiniums and high rise structures is anticipated to be the fastest growing segment, and the most costly expenditure, in the entire construction industry over the next 5-10 years in Florida. Understanding the corrosion process and taking steps to prevent it can save your association a lot of headaches, inconvenience and money. This article focuses on the application of cathodic protection as a method of preventing corrosion of concrete balconies. 

Steel is a man

If you are an owner of a condominium that is more than 10 years old and located near salt water, you have probably incurred special assessments for repairs to your building for cracked or spalled concrete due to corrosion. If you haven't experienced the restoration process, you will most likely be introduced to costly concrete restoration in the immediate future because the corrosion of reinforcing steel in concrete is inevitable. Major concrete restoration of buildings such as condomoiniums and high rise structures is anticipated to be the fastest growing segment, and the most costly expenditure, in the entire construction industry over the next 5-10 years in Florida. Understanding the corrosion process and taking steps to prevent it can save your association a lot of headaches, inconvenience and money. This article focuses on the application of cathodic protection as a method of preventing corrosion of concrete balconies.

Steel is a man made substance produced from iron ore. The

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