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Research Opportunities in Corrosion Science and Engineering
FIGURE 1.1 A mooring ring, shackle, and thimble with rope illustrate three different techniques for combatting the effects of materials degradation,. Originally, the ring and eye bolt were painted, the shackle and thimble were galvanized (zinc coated), and the mooring line was made of nylon. Courtesy of Erik Svedberg.
$2 trillion and $4 trillion are lost to corrosion each decade—on a relative scale, this amount equates to the cost of repairing the infrastructure damage of three or four hurricanes as large as Hurricane Katrina, which caused massive damage in New Orleans, southern Mississippi, and Alabama.
However, the true costs of corrosion to society are even more pervasive and, in practice, difficult to compile. Several studies, including a recent National Research Council (NRC) report on corrosion education,2 have described both the economic impacts of corrosion and the less measurable impacts such as loss of readiness—that is, the nation’s ability to respond militarily or otherwise to emergencies or other situations involving national security. For example, while the maintenance and replacement costs associated with the corrosion of military systems can be