Electrochemical Descaling of Metal Oxides from Stainless Steel Using an Ionic Liquid-Acid Solution

Jungeun Lee, Yeji Kang, Jin Suk Kim, Jongdeuk Park, Jae Joon Lee, Byung Kwon Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Oxide scales often formed on the surface of stainless steel, and it is of high interest to descale the surface oxide effectively and environment-friendly during steel smelting and engineering processing. It is generally done by treating the oxide layer under strong and harsh mixed acid (HNO3 + HF) conditions or in a strong molten salt (NaOH + NaNO3) environment at high temperatures, while the generation of very harmful and environmentally hazardous gases, such as NOx, is inevitable. A novel, simple, fast, and environment-friendly electrochemical method at ambient temperature is proposed in this research to remove the oxide scale from the stainless steel surface using an ionic liquid with a small amount of HCl. It was found that the optimized electrochemical anodization treatment in an ionic liquid environment could significantly improve the descaling efficiency at least 50 times faster than the simple passive and slow dissolution in a mixture of an ionic liquid and a concentrated acid.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15709-15714
Number of pages6
JournalACS Omega
Issue number25
StatePublished - 30 Jun 2020

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Copyright © 2020 American Chemical Society.


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