Corrosion problems are in the news everyday

on September 8, 2014

waterburstduetocorrosionRarely a day goes by without corrosion problems making the headlines.  Corrosion affects products in just about every industry and in every part of the world.   The US Navy alone spends 22.9 billion dollars per year fighting rust. source.  According to, 2.2 trillion dollars is spent world wide dealing with corrosion. Below are just a few news snippets relating to corrosion in the last month:

  •  “1.5 Million Solar-Panel Systems Recalled Over Corrosion Problem” According to the article, SolarWorld is recalling 1.5 million solar systems in the US and Canada because of possible electric shock, electrocution or fire hazard.   Systems installed with bare copper grounding lugs can corrode resulting in a faulty ground circuit.       There have not been any reported incidences, but the company has received one report of a corrosion problem.   Copper readily corrodes and since many solar panels are installed on roofs out in the elements, the conditions are certainly ideal for long term corrosion.  The installation instructions have now been modified to require a tin coated lug.
  • “Wyoming oil spill caused by backhoe and corrosion”   According to the news release, 25000 gallons of oil leaked into the Powder River Basin.   The issues were due to corrosion of a 6 inch pipe.   The pipe was damaged by a backhoe, but it did not immediately leak until corrosion turned the minor damage into the resulting oil spill.
  • Corrosion in oil pipe lines is not an uncommon issue:  Last November at the Dongying-Huangdao II pipeline in China, an explosion caused the death of 61 people.   A subsequent government investigation determined that corrosion was one contributing factor in the cause. Source
  •  Australia’s sewers are crumbling from within…” according to the article sewer systems around the world are corroding at alarming levels, costing billions of dollars to repair.  The main cause for the corrosion is the presence of sulfide in the sewage, which is formed from the sulfates added to drinking water for purification purposes.   The proposed solution is to replace the current aluminum sulfate that is used to purify drinking water with sulfite-free substitutes.
  • A story on August 5, 2014 reported that a water main break caused massive flooding at the University of California, Los Angeles.  See “Corrosion led to pipe burst that swamped UCLA.” Over 20 million gallons of water was released through a pipe that burst and spewed water out a street hole in Sunset Boulevard.  The resulting flood damaged the teams’ basketball court and flooded a number of buildings and parking lots throughout the campus.  Over 400 cars were said to be completely submerged.  The water main break was said to be caused by structure problems and corrosion.

Packnet is a distributor of Cortec corrosion inhibiting products.  Cortec’s entire business is devoted to corrosion prevention.   Cortec spends millions of dollars every year in the study of corrosion and development of corrosion inhibiting systems.  Cortec products may not have prevented the corrosion issues in these news stories, but if you manufacture, store or transport products that are susceptible to corrosion, you need to discuss your applications with a company that is dedicated to corrosion prevention.   Cortec has products that are suitable for just about every industry and application.   If you can’t find one for your situation, Cortec will gladly review your application and give you an expert recommendation. For more information on corrosion inhibiting products, go to Packnet’s corrosion webpage  or contact a Packnet technical representative.