Intergranular and Selective Corrosion

  • Pietro Pedeferri (Deceased)Email author
Part of the Engineering Materials book series (ENG.MAT.)


Metals consist of micrometric size crystalline grains. The border between these grains, called grain boundary, is a peculiar and delicate region, due to a distorted crystallographic structure and possible segregation of impurities and second phases. These characteristics of non-equilibrium make grain boundaries particularly reactive, and weaker in terms of corrosion resistance, so that in some cases a localized corrosion, called intergranular corrosion, can occur. This corrosion-type attack is very severe because it leads to grain detachment, then to a reduced mechanical resistance, despite the negligible metal consumption; in some environments and in the presence of tensile stresses it triggers stress corrosion cracking. In this chapter the most common intergranular corrosion forms are described, including stainless steel sensitization, knife-line attack, exfoliation of aluminium, and selective corrosion of brass and cast iron.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Politecnico di MilanoMilanItaly

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