Oxidation of Metals

, Volume 43, Issue 3–4, pp 185–215 | Cite as

Oxidation behavior of copper at high temperatures under two different modes of direct-current applications

  • S. K. Roy
  • V. Ananth
  • S. K. Bose


Oxidation kinetics of copper in the temperature range of 973–1173 K atPO2=21.27 kPa exhibit enhancement and deceleration in the rates with changing polarity compared to normal oxidation under interrupted mode of directcurrent application. These conditions are achieved by connecting the oxidizing copper covered with an initially formed thin oxide film to the positive and negative terminal of a dc source, respectively. However, the influence of direction of the current is found to be opposite under uninterrupted mode of impressed current flow in the same temperature range. The effect of short-circuiting the metal to the outer oxide/air interface on the reaction kinetics is also reported. The rate of oxide-scale growth under normal condition, and two different modes of current applications as well as with shorting circuitry attachment conform to the parabolic growth law. The results pertaining to the two different modes of impressed current have been discussed considering both the phenomena of electrolysis of the oxide electrolyte and the polarization at the two phase boundaries. The enhancement and the reduction in rates under uninterrupted impressed current conditions are explained on the basis of increased and decreased average defect concentrations, respectively, within the oxide layer. The acceleration and deceleration in the rates under interrupted mode of current flow have been explained in the light of sustenance of a steeper and flatter electrochemical-potential gradient of defects, respectively, across the growing-oxide layer. The possible different responses of the metal/oxide and oxide/air interfaces to the impressed current brought into play by two different modes of current application, have enabled to display a better insight on the mechanistic aspects of scale growth under the influence of an externally applied current.

Key Words

copper oxidation direct current uninterrupted mode interrupted mode 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. K. Roy
    • 1
  • V. Ananth
    • 1
  • S. K. Bose
    • 1
  1. 1.Metallurgical and Materials Engineering DepartmentIndian Institute of TechnologyKharagpurIndia

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