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International Journal of Corrosion
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 6392702, 5 pages
Research Article

Simulation of the Ill-Posed Problem of Reinforced Concrete Corrosion Detection Using Boundary Element Method

1Department of Mechanical Engineering, Syiah Kuala University, Jalan Tgk Syech Abdul Rauf 7, Banda Aceh 23111, Indonesia
2Tsunami & Disaster Mitigation Research Center (TDMRC), Syiah Kuala University, Jalan Tgk Abdul Rahman, Gp. Pie, Meuraxa District, Banda Aceh 23111, Indonesia
3Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia

Received 21 January 2016; Accepted 24 March 2016

Academic Editor: Jerzy A. Szpunar

Copyright © 2016 Syarizal Fonna et al. 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.


Many studies have suggested that the corrosion detection of reinforced concrete (RC) based on electrical potential on concrete surface was an ill-posed problem, and thus it may present an inaccurate interpretation of corrosion. However, it is difficult to prove the ill-posed problem of the RC corrosion detection by experiment. One promising technique is using a numerical method. The objective of this study is to simulate the ill-posed problem of RC corrosion detection based on electrical potential on a concrete surface using the Boundary Element Method (BEM). BEM simulates electrical potential within a concrete domain. In order to simulate the electrical potential, the domain is assumed to be governed by Laplace’s equation. The boundary conditions for the corrosion area and the noncorrosion area of rebar were selected from its polarization curve. A rectangular reinforced concrete model with a single rebar was chosen to be simulated using BEM. The numerical simulation results using BEM showed that the same electrical potential distribution on the concrete surface could be generated from different combinations of parameters. Corresponding to such a phenomenon, this problem can be categorized as an ill-posed problem since it has many solutions. Therefore, BEM successfully simulates the ill-posed problem of reinforced concrete corrosion detection.