Likely the result of erosion corrosion, this approximately 48 μm-long corrosion resistant alloy particle was collected in a sample of produced water at a wellhead in the Gulf of Mexico. Erosion corrosion occurs when the relative motion of a corrosive fluid on a metal surface accelerates the rate of corrosion due to mechanical action, such as abrasion, impingement or cavitation. Depending on the degree of flow turbulence, the eroded surface can be stripped of a protective layer, such as a corrosion product and/or corrosion inhibitor coat, then becoming more susceptible to enhanced corrosion.



Collected in the same sample as the particle on the previous page, this uniquely shaped corrosion resistant alloy particle measures approximately 25 μm in length and is also the likely result of erosion corrosion. The bright particle on the left side is barium sulfate and the gray particle on the right is a silicate. Both images were captured on a variable pressure tungsten filament scanning electron microscope at our Sugar Land Technology Center.

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