Scale Formation and Degradation of Diffusion Coatings Deposited on 9% Cr Steel in Molten Solar Salt

C. Oskay, T.M. Meißner, C. Dobler, B. Grégoire, M.C. Galetz

Coatings 9 (2019), 687, DOI: 10.3390/coatings9100687

The employment of ferritic-martensitic steels e.g., P91, as structural materials in concentrated solar power (CSP) plants can significantly increase cost-efficiency. However, their application is strongly restricted by their lower corrosion resistance in molten nitrates, compared to austenitic steels or Ni-based alloys. In this study, Cr-, Al-, and Cr/Al-diffusion coatings were deposited on P91 via pack cementation in order to improve its scaling behavior in molten solar salt (MSS). The corrosion behavior of coated specimens was investigated with respect to uncoated P91 in MSS at 600 °C for up to 1000 h. The exposure in MSS resulted in a thick, highly porous, and multi-layered oxide scale on uncoated P91 consisting of hematite, magnetite, and sodium ferrite. On the other hand, the scale grown on the chromized P91 comprised of a thin Cr-rich inner layer, which shifted breakaway to prolonged exposure durations. The aluminized specimens both formed very thin, highly protective alumina scales with localized protrusions.

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