Electrochemical Study of the AISI 409 Ferritic Stainless Steel: Passive Film Stability and Pitting Nucleation and Growth

<div><p>The aim of the present work was to study the passive film stability and pitting corrosion behavior of the AISI 409 stainless steel. The electrochemical tests were carried out in 0.1 M NaCl solution at room temperature. The general electrochemical behavior was assessed using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) measurements whereas the semiconducting properties of the passive film were evaluated by the Mott-Schottky approach. Pitting corrosion was investigated using potentiodynamic and potentiostatic polarization tests. Surface morphology was examined using confocal laser scanning microscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) analyses were carried out to identify the composition of precipitates that could act as preferential sites for the onset of pitting corrosion. The results showed that the passive film presents n-type semiconductive behavior. Grain boundaries played an important role as pitting initiation sites for the AISI 409 stainless steel.</p></div>