What Does Inhibitor Coating Mean?
An inhibitor coating is a protective barrier in the form of a solid, film or fluid applied to a metallic surface to prevent corrosion. These barrier coatings possess chemical or physical properties that prevent corrosion reactivity and/or material degradation due to external factors.
Corrosionpedia Explains Inhibitor Coating
Inhibitor coatings generate a passivation layer on the metal they protect, which prevents contact with water, chemicals and other corrosion causing materials. Passivation reduces the reactivity by electrochemical polarization.
Many metals form inert surfaces when exposed to the atmosphere. However, other metals form porous reactive surfaces, such as the case with iron. The latter group of metals is more prone to corrosion due to increased reactivity that supports ion exchange. These metals therefore require a protective inhibitor coating to reduce or eliminate the reactivity.
Some metal bases that benefit greatly from inhibitor coatings are aluminum, zinc and iron. The inert surface that is generated as a result of inhibitor coatings are typically an oxide or a nitride.