Study of the Effect of Sol pH and Nanoclay Incorporation on the Corrosion Protection Performance of a Silane Sol-Gel Coating

Document Type: Research Paper


1 School of Metallurgy and Materials Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Tehran, P.O. Box 11155-4563, Tehran, Iran.

2 Department of Materials Engineering and Industrial Technology, University of Trento, Via Mesiano 77, 38100 Trento, Italy.


This work is aimed to evaluate the role of nanoclay in the protective performance of an eco-friendly silane sol-gel layer applied on mild steel substrate in 0.1M sodium chloride solution. At the first step, the effect of pH of the silane solution, consisting of a mixture of γ-glycidoxypropiltrimethoxysilane and methyltriethoxysilane and tetraethoxysilane, on the coating performance was evaluated through electrochemical noise measurements. The values of characteristic charge as a parameter extracted from shot noise theory revealed that the sol pH determining the rate of hydrolysis can play an important role in the corrosion protection behavior of silane coatings. Then, the influence of clay nanoparticles on the corrosion protective performance of the hybrid silane film was studied through taking advantage of electrochemical techniques, including electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and polarization curves, as well as surface analysis methods. The obtained electrochemical data including the values of charge transfer resistance, coating resistance, low frequency impedance and corrosion current density showed that the silane sol gel film in the presence of clay nanoparticles can present an improved corrosion protection. The behavior was connected to an enhancement in the coating barrier properties. Moreover, FESEM and water contact angle confirmed the higher reticulation in case of the coating incorporating nanoclay.