Microbial Induced Corrosion of Plastic Products

JEF-TEC provides the testing and analysis of the microbial induced corrosion in the plastic products.

JEF-TEC studies the degradation of the plastic materials for structural products due to the microbial induced corrosion.

Importance of analysis of the microbial induced corrosion

Plastic products are widely used in parts of household articles and appliances and in recent years use of the plastic composite such as carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) is increased as the building components as well as the structural components in the large plants to replace metals.

While microbial attack on metal products to corrode is well known, degradation of plastic products in which microbial induced corrosion appears to be involved occurs more frequently in recent years.

JEF-TEC provides the testing and analysis of not only metals but also the microbial induced corrosion in the plastic products.

JEF-TEC′s plan on the study of microbial induced corrosion in plastic products

  • Macroscopic/microscopic examination of failure, cracks, rupture, and discoloration of plastic products
  • Physical and chemical assessment of severity of degradation in plastic products
    (Determination of hardness, tensile strength, molecular weight distribution, thermal analysis, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR))
  • Identification of a root cause of failure in the microbial induced corrosion of the plastic products by optical observation and chemical analysis
    • When microbes are found near the failed area of the parts, deposits in the area are collected for identification of microbes through inoculation and gene analysis.
    • Study and analysis of the environment, for instance, liquid media and particular atmosphere to which the parts are exposed and attacked.
    • Assessment of the relationship between the identified microbes and the analysis results of degraded plastics.

Example of Analysis of Degradation of Plastics by Microbes

Inspection of fracture surface Inspection of fracture surface

It is presumed that failure occurred from an origin caused by microbial induced corrosion.

Determination of microbe species by gene analysis of deposits

Base sequence of genes in the microbe is determined to compare to the data base of genes identifying the microbe are Fusarium moniliforme and Alternaria alternata, which are well known as the microbe to decompose organic materials.

(Analysis procedure)

Extraction of DNA of the microbes from deposit followed by cell proliferation
Gene analysis by a DNA sequencer to determine the base sequence
Survey on the database for the base (adenine, guanidine, thymine, and cytosine) to match to the DNA base sequence of the microbe found.

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