Title

Acetic Acid Vapor Corrosion of Lead-Tin Alloys Containing 3.4 and 15% Tin

Abstract

Lead–tin alloy pipes in historic organs frequently suffer from damaging atmospheric corrosion. Organic acids emitted from the wood of organ cases had been established previously as the cause of deterioration in pure lead pipes. In the present study, lead–tin alloy samples containing 3.4 and 15 atom % tin were subjected to laboratory exposure experiments under atmospheres of 1100 ppb acetic acid, 350 ppm CO 2 , and 60 or 95% relative humidity (RH). Wet and dry corrosion mass gains were monitored, and corrosion product compositions and morphologies were characterized by grazing incidence angle X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. Cross sections were cut through corrosion sites using a focused ion beam milling method, and elemental information was obtained using wavelength dispersive and energy dispersive X-ray analyses. The corrosion products and morphologies observed in the alloys are the same as those reported for pure lead, but the corrosion susceptibilities of the alloys show a much stronger dependence on RH. The presence of 3.4 or 15 atom % Sn provides corrosion protection at moderate humidity, but this protective effect breaks down at high humidity. These findings highlight the importance of humidity control as well as pipe material selection in the conservation of historic and newly constructed organs.

Publisher

Electrochemical Society

Publication Date

1-1-2009

Publication Title

Journal of the Electrochemical Society

Department

Chemistry and Biochemistry

Document Type

Article

DOI

10.1149/1.3225761

Language

English

Format

text

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