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International Journal of Corrosion
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 506501, 17 pages
Research Article

Experimental Investigation on Corrosion of Cast Iron Pipes

School of Engineering, University of Greenwich, Medway ME4 4TB, UK

Received 1 December 2010; Accepted 15 March 2011

Academic Editor: Flavio Deflorian

Copyright © 2011 H. Mohebbi and C. Q. Li. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


It is well known that corrosion is the predominant mechanism for the deterioration of cast iron pipes, leading to the reduction of pipe capacity and ultimate collapse of the pipes. In order to assess the remaining service life of corroded cast iron pipes, it is imperative to understand the mechanisms of corrosion over a long term and to develop models for pipe deterioration. Although many studies have been carried out to determine the corrosion behavior of cast iron, little research has been undertaken to understand how cast iron pipes behave over a longer time scale than hours, days, or weeks. The present paper intends to fill the gap regarding the long-term corrosion behaviour of cast iron pipes in the absence of historical data. In this paper, a comprehensive experimental program is presented in which the corrosion behaviour of three exservice pipes was thoroughly examined in three simulated service environments. It has been found in the paper that localised corrosion is the primary form of corrosion of cast iron water pipes. It has also been found that the microstructure of cast irons is a key factor that affects the corrosion behaviour of cast iron pipes. The paper concludes that long-term tests on corrosion behaviour of cast iron pipes can help develop models for corrosion-induced deterioration of the pipes for use in predicting the remaining service life of the pipes.