Materials Performance

SEP 2018

Materials Performance is the world's most widely circulated magazine dedicated to corrosion prevention and control. MP provides information about the latest corrosion control technologies and practical applications for every industry and environment.

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University Claims Fastest Laser Probe on Record From August 1986: An upgraded version of a laser atom probe may have allowed scientists at Pennsylvania State University to observe and measure the fastest bond-breaking chemical reaction ever recorded. The fastest reaction previously reported occurred within several trillionths of a second, according to T.T. Tsong, a physics professor at the university, but the reaction measured recently by Tsong and his colleagues occurred within eight ten-trillionths of a second. Scientists used an improved version of the pulsed-laser, time-of-flight atom probe, the invention of a Pennsylvania State University physicist, to break the bond of an electrically charged ion of helium and rhodium, resulting in one helium atom and one rhodium ion. The new probe uses a laser pulse and an electronic field to peel off one or two atoms at a time, enabling scientists to observe and measure the ions. According to Tsong, this capability will prove especially useful to micro-electronics designers who want to know the atomic properties of the interface between the metal coatings and silicon base of silicon chips. Dogs Used to Locate Leaks in Canadian Pipelines From June 1990: Esso Resources Canada Ltd. (Edmonton, Alberta) uses Labrador retrievers to locate leaks in pipelines buried as deep as 13 ft under frozen clay. The leaks are too small to be located by other methods, according to Ron Quaife, an environmental scientist with the company. After the pipelines are purged, they are pressurized with a chemical formulated to smell like rotted food. After 24 hours, the dogs demonstrated they could identify leaks of one part per trillion of the chemical with 100 percent success. Gas chromotography can identify leaks only on the order of one part per million. Houston Suing Firms over Sewage Spill From May 1993: The city of Houston, Texas, is seeking $10 million in damages from companies that installed a sewer system that failed in 1991 causing two massive sewage spills into local bayous. The sewage project included installing a "special plastic liner" in a concrete sewer by tunneling 60 ft. underground. The project, ironically, was intended to curb sewage spills and began largely in response to environmental agencies' orders to upgrade the city's sewer system. The liner collapsed, balled up, then blocked sewage from travelling through underground pipe. Subsequent heavy rains spurred overflows that sent an estimated 141 million gallons of sewage into the bayous, the suit alleges. While only one of the 10 companies has formally answered the charges, the collective defense seems clear—that the city knew potential problems existed with the lining, but officials approved the opening of the project anyway. The case also raises questions about a change in city policy to construct new sewers through a process called "deep tunneling," rather than the traditional "open-cut" method. Some contractors and experts believe that a Editor's Note: As part of the 75 th Anniversary keepsake issue, this special Up Front section recaps key industry developments going all the way back to the section's inaugural launch in August 1986. 1 9 4 3 – 2 0 1 8 NACE INTERNATIONAL 75 W W W.MATERIALSPERFORMANCE.COM Up Front SEPTEMBER 2018 A6

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