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Microbiologically Induced Corrosion (MIC)

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Microbiologically Induced Corrosion (MIC) is an insidious condition caused by biological growth, typically bacteria, algae, or fungi, in water under low flow or stagnant conditions. One reason it is such a problem is that MIC can eat through a pipe or tube in a matter of weeks, or even days, if equipment is left with stagnant, untreated water in it. MIC has been found in cooling water systems, piping, vessels, and storage tanks, and typically manifests itself as pits, with subsurface "caverns" that are larger that the pitted opening at the surface. Aluminum, 300 series SS's, brass, and carbon steels are especially vulnerable to MIC. In order to prevent MIC, operators should take proper measures to treat water systems with biocides in order to kill the organic compounds.

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Articles about Microbiologically Induced Corrosion (MIC)
July/August 2019 Inspectioneering Journal

A significant number of pipeline failures due to external or internal corrosion have resulted from MIC, some with catastrophic consequences. This article demonstrates a three-step failure analysis process used to investigate the failure mechanism.

July/August 2017 Inspectioneering Journal

Failure analysis of piping that has experienced corrosion damage provides operators with valuable information needed to prevent future failures. Effective processes and procedures are essential when investigating the cause of corrosion on pipelines...

November/December 2015 Inspectioneering Journal

Understanding the common factors that promote corrosion threats in the oil and gas value chain helps operators create effective inspection strategies.

Online Article

Jim Svetgoff, Corrosion Advisor at Devon Energy recently interviewed with American Business Conferences for the Crude Pipeline Asset Integrity Congress 2014.

May/June 2005 Inspectioneering Journal

MIC is caused by biological growth, i.e. organic slime (typically bacteria, algae, and fungi) in water under low flow or stagnant conditions. The industry experiences it in cooling water systems, piping, vessels and storage tank bottoms where the...

Authors: John Reynolds
Partner Content

Traditional pressure vessel inspections often require taking assets out of service. However, MISTRAS’ Non-Intrusive Inspection (NII) programs provide data as good or better than internal inspections, while assets remain in service. NII is...

September/October 1995 Inspectioneering Journal

Low-energy piping system failures in power-generating facilities are often the result of fouling and corrosion. These degradation mechanisms can affect the capacity of piping for fluid-carrying, the heat transfer rates of heat exchangers, and the...

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