Applied Surface Science, Vol.254, No.6, 1806-1814, 2008
Composition and corrosion resistance of cerium conversion films on the AZ31 magnesium alloy and its relation to the salt anion
Pre-treatments based on different cerium salts were applied to the AZ31 Mg alloy. The pre-treatments were performed by immersion in solutions of various Ce(III) salts: cerium chloride, cerium nitrate, cerium sulphate and cerium phosphate. The chemical composition of the treated surfaces was investigated by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and Auger electron spectroscopy, whereas the corrosion behaviour of the pretreated AZ31 substrates was investigated in 0.005 M NaCl solutions using potentiodynamic polarisation and open circuit potential monitoring. The surface film contained a mixture of Ce(IV) and Ce(III) salts. The film thickness depends upon the cerium salt used. The electrochemical results show that all the conversion pre-treatments reduced the corrosion activity of the AZ31 Mg alloy substrates in the presence of chloride ions. The corrosion protection efficiency is related with the anion present in the cerium salt. (C) 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.