Application for 6 MEUR from EU

CMR recently joined a large European consortium consisting of researchers and industry partners to demonstrate that aluminium (Al) could be a competitive substitute of the traditional iron-based alloys in subsea and marine applications.

01.12.2016 by Gunn Janne Myrseth

Application for 6 MEUR from EU

Last week we met colleagues from France and Portugal in Toulouse at a seminar organised by the Regine Basseguy from CNRS. The scope of the seminar was to discuss a recent EU project application which aims at understanding the intimate interaction between marine microorganisms, Al and Al-alloys.

AUTOBIOPAL proposes a paradigm change. First by demonstrating that Al alloys aided by certain bacteria, self-coat themselves with long-lasting natural protective coatings. Secondly, the project aims at promoting the use of self-coating aluminium towards various players in the Al market.

The AUTOBIOPAL proposal aims to increase the durability of Al alloys in various marine environments. By fully understanding the Microbial Activity influence on the material life cycle, the ambitious project will provide industries with innovative bio-solutions to efficiently protect marine Al-based structures.

Pushing the limits and forcing a paradigm change

Traditionally the marine applications of Al are limited to several tens of metres below the surface where its corrosion resistance is well documented. Nevertheless, marine operations down to thousands of metres depth are more common nowadays and iron-based alloys (steel) represent the workhorse of these applications. Unfortunately iron and its alloys are prone to corrosion which must be continuously counteracted by costly surface treatments (ex. coatings) and cathodic protection.

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