Modelling of pitting corrosion in marine and offshore steel structures - a technical review

Jyoti Bhandari, Faisal Khan , Rouzbeh Abbassi, Vikram Garaniya, Roberto Ojeda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

239 Citations (Scopus)


Corrosion is a major cause of structural deterioration in marine and offshore structures. It affects the life of process equipment and pipelines, and can result in structural failure, leakage, product loss, environmental pollution and the loss of life. Pitting corrosion is regarded as one of the most hazardous forms of corrosion for marine and offshore structures. The total loss of the structure might be very small, but local rate of attack can be very large and can lead to early catastrophic failure. Pitting corrosion is a localized accelerated dissolution of metal that occurs as a result of a breakdown in the protective passive film on the metal surface. It has been studied for many years; however, the structural failure due to pit characteristics is still not fully understood. Accurate pit depth measurements, precise strength assessment techniques, risk analysis due to pitting, and the mathematical relationship of the environmental factors that causes pitting failure are also factors, which need further understanding. Hence this paper focuses on these issues. It reviews and analyses the current understanding of the pitting corrosion mechanism and investigates all possible factors that can cause pitting corrosion. Furthermore, different techniques employed by scientists and researchers to identify and model the pitting corrosion are also reviewed and analysed. Future work should involve an in-depth scientific study of the corrosion mechanism and an engineering predictive model is recommended in order to assess failure, and thereby attempt to increase the remaining life of offshore assets.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-62
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • pitting corrosion
  • offshore structures
  • prediction
  • corrosion modelling
  • safety assessment
  • steel


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