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corrosion of cor-ten type steels in concrete

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  1. I will be grateful to receive any data/opinions/references on the performance of corten- type weathering steels embedded in concrete (with or without chloride contamination). Until ca.1989 the consensus was clearly negative but news of more recent developments would be welcome.
  2. ACI Committee 222, in its Publ. 222 R-89 (Corrosion of Metals in Concrete), pronounced such steels as "not suitable for reinforcement" since embeddment in concrete deprives the steel of the very exposure to atmosphere that is esential for the development of the corrosion resisting dense oxide film.
  3. The Building Research Establishment (BRE,U.K.) conducted long-term exposure tests of such weathering steels in concrete and reported (Durability of Corrosion Resisting Steels in Concrete by Treadway et al.,Proc.I.C.E. Part 1,1989) :
  1. for low levels of chloride contamination, weathering steels do not improve durability and hence do not justify the additional costs, and
  2. for high levels of chloride contamination, pitting corrosion was sufficiently severe to indicate that weathering steels would be unsuitable.

4. In spite of such consistently negative recommendations (based on both theory and experiments), such steels are being specified for RC structures in India based mainly on manufacturers? claims of their superior corrosion resistance in concrete. Any feedback from international sources would greatly benefit the evolvement of a consensus among civil engineering consultants and clients.



Prakash C. Chowdhury (New Delhi)



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Prakash C. Chowdhury, B.Sc.(Surrey), Ph.D.(N'cle)                      

Regional Resident Representative 

Torsteel Research Foundation

H-1A, Hauz Khas

New Delhi - 110 016, India

E-mail : pcchowdhury(--nospam--at)yahoo.com

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