Optimization of process variables and corrosion properties of a multi layer silica sol gel coating on AZ91D using the Box–Behnken design
Anti-corrosion silica coating was prepared via the sol–gel method for AZ91D magnesium alloy using tetraethoxysilane and methyltriethoxysilane as precursors. Silica coating was deposited on fluorinated magnesium alloy substrates by dip coating. The surface morphology of the silica coating was characterized by scanning electron microscope (SEM). The corrosion properties were studied by electrochemical impedance measurements and polarisation technique in 3.5 wt% Sodium chloride solution. The results showed an improvement in the corrosion performance from these coatings. A three-factor, three-level design of experiment (DOE) with response surface methodology including a Box–Behnken design was run to evaluate the main and interaction effects of several independent formulation variables, which included precursor ratios MTES/TEOS (X1), sintering temperature (X3) and sol dilution (X2) which measured the volume of the diluted sol divided by the initial volume of sol. The dependent variables included the corrosion current derived from the polarisation curve (icor = Y1) and the coating resistance derived from the Nyquist curve (Rcoat = Y2). Optimizations were predicted to yield Y1 and Y2 values of 1.57018E–7A cm−2 and 14279 Ω cm2, when X1, X2, and X3 were 3.36, 1.52 and 222, respectively.