An epoxy based duplex coating system (Electrogalvanized Mild Steel/Etch Primer/Epoxy-Polyamide Primer/ Epoxy-Amine Topcoat System) embedded with iron oxide, zinc chromate and titanium dioxide pigments was studied to ascertain its corrosion resistant synergistic performance at various anthropogenic sites of Karachi coastal city while salt spray test was also executed for reference. Coating performance was ascertained by visual morphological inspection, gloss measurements, Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Energy-Dispersive X-ray (EDX) analysis and by Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) Spectroscopy. SEM & EDX results corroborated high degradation of epoxy coating at marine site experiment as substantial increment in oxygen/carbon ratio and high concentration of Ti at coating surface due to ex-corporation of pigments were noticed. Worst performance of epoxy coating at marine test site as compared to salt spray testing may be due to the salt-laden winds of Karachi coastal city and corrosive constituents incorporated in atmospheres from industrial and automobiles exhaust. General diminution trend in gloss value, depletion of morphological features witnessed through SEM micrographs, curtailment of aryl ether and aromatic nuclei signals in FTIR spectrum, and emergence of new peaks in the 1620-1800 cm-1 region correspond to formation of new oxidation products; concluded that an insignificant protection offered by the epoxy coating due to its outdoor aging which led to ex-capsulation of pigments under moist conditions. Appraisal of these results have furnished an average coating performance correlation of 547.5 hpy (hours of salt spray test equivalence per year exposure test) at marine test site and 528 hpy at industrial test site in terms of blistering while equivalence mean in terms of rusting were found 680 hpy and 567 hpy at marine and industrial test sites respectively.

Humaira Bano, Azhar Mahmood and Syed Arif Kazmi