Novel technology to predict iron clogging and corrosion in water and hydraulic systems
Corrosion and iron clogging (rust and ochreous deposits) are commonly known problems, particularly in hydraulic systems such as heating or cooling systems, wells and piping but also for water disinfection. These phenomena are potentially causing great damage to the system if they are not taken seriously or have negative impact on system performance. Scientists at the Leuphana University of Lüneburg developed a novel method to predict iron clogging in water and hydraulic systems.
Picture of a well inspection showing clogging due to ochreous deposits. Source: Geothermie Neubrandenburg GmbH
Ongoing corrosion processes most often remain invisible. When they are finally discovered due to system malfunction or losses in efficiency, often a costly and time-consuming revision of the damaged parts and the whole system is required.
Scientists at the Leuphana University of Lüneburg developed a novel method to monitor and predict iron clogging/rust build-up in water and hydraulic systems. This new sensor technology is based on electrochemical measurements of ferrous iron activities as well as other critical parameters and can be used to monitor corrosion processes and to estimate the potential of ferric hydroxide build-up.
Statistical Analysis of calculated (Feber.) versus measured (Fegem.) ferric iron content showing very good correlation. The measurements were performed in two different irrigation wells. Source: Oliver Opel.
Monitoring Corrosion (iron clogging). The new and patented method was used to monitor free ferrous (electrochemical measurements of ferrous iron activities), caused by Fe-over-titration in PIPES, a Fe-complexing system (anti-corrosion agent). The method could be used to set-up a critical regulation point for a follow-up dosing of the exhausted anti-corrosion agent. Source: Oliver Opel.
Proof of principle on real water systems.
An international PCT application has been nationalised and granted in Europe (EP2601511B1, validated in DE, FR, GB, AT, CH). Applicant: Leuphana Universität Lüneburg Stiftung Öffentlichen Rechts.
Opel et al.: Monitoring of microbially mediated corrosion and scaling processes using redox potential measurements. Bioelectrochemistry, 2014, 97:137-44.
Dr. Stefan Uhle