Electrochemical etching of aluminium alloy in ionic liquids

P. Huang, P. C. Howlett, D. R. Macfarlane, M. Forsyth

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearchpeer-review


AA5083 aluminium alloy has been shown to be partially passivated by a 2-step anodic pre-treatment in Trihexyl(tetradecyl)phosphonium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)amide ([P6,6,6,14][NTf2]) ionic liquid. Surface characterisation revealed that an electrochemical etching process had occurred, comparable to acid etching of aluminium. Scanning electron microscopy/energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy results have established that magnesium dealloyed from the Mg2Si intermetallic particles and metal fluorides were deposited onto the remaining Mg2Si sites, which subsequently led to decreased anodic corrosion kinetics (to one third of the control) as well as an increase in the corrosion and pitting potentials. This unique electrochemical etching process offers a simple and quick method to improve the corrosion resistance of an aluminium alloy as it leads to a more uniform surface, in terms of defect size and distribution, compared to conventional acid etching. This process has the potential to be used as a pre-treatment to inhibit corrosion of AA5083 alloy.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAnnual Conference of the Australasian Corrosion Association 2012
Place of PublicationKerrimuir VIC Australia
PublisherAustralasian Corrosion Association
Number of pages9
ISBN (Print)9781622769698
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventAustralasian Corrosion Association (ACA) Conference 2012: Corrosion and Prevention - Crown Conference Centre, Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 11 Nov 201214 Nov 2012


ConferenceAustralasian Corrosion Association (ACA) Conference 2012
Abbreviated titleCP 2012
OtherCorrosion Management for a Sustainable World: Transport, Energy, Mining, Life Extension and Modelling


  • Alluminium alloys
  • Anodic passivation
  • Corrosion
  • Electrochemical etching
  • Ionic liquids
  • Surface characterisation

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