Abstract We report and discuss the corrosion protective properties of a thin nano-composite coating system consisting of an 11 µm thick polyester acrylate (PEA) basecoat, covered by an approximately 1–2 µm thick layer of TiO2 nanoparticles carrying a 0.05 µm thick hexamethyl disiloxane (HMDSO) top coat. The corrosion protective properties were evaluated on carbon steel substrates immersed in 3 wt% NaCl solution by open circuit potential (OCP) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) measurements. The protective properties of each layer, and of each pair of layers, were also evaluated to gain further understanding of the long-term protective properties offered by the nano-composite coating. The full coating system showed excellent corrosion protective properties in the corrosive environment of 3 wt% NaCl-solution for an extended period of 100 days, during which the coating impedance, at the lower frequency limit (0.01 Hz), remained above 108 O cm2. We suggest that the excellent corrosion protective properties of the complete coating system is due to a combination of (i) good adhesion and stability of the PEA basecoat, (ii) the surface roughness and the elongated diffusion path provided by the addition of TiO2 nanoparticles, and (iii) the low surface energy provided by the HMDSO top coat.
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