The beneficial effect of the removal of MnS inclusions on the pitting of stainless steels has been demonstrated in two ways. (1) High-purity Type 316L stainless steel with no inclusions was used as a specimen in the measurement of anodic polarization curves in 0.5 M NaCl and (2) commercial Type 316L stainless steel with MnS and slag-related inclusions was first polarized at different potentials for 30 min in 1 M NaOof pH 3 and then anodic polarization measurements were taken in 0.5 M NaCl. Pitting did not occur in the passive or transpassive region of the high-purity steel. The polarization treatment dissolved MnS and some oxide inclusions (CaO and SiO on the surface of the commercial steel. An increase in pitting potential of the commercial steel was noted after treatment at potentials above 0.2 V. At the same time, the number of current spikes due to metastable pits decreased significantly. These results are more likely due to the beneficial effect of removing MnS inclusions from the steel surface rather than the modification effect of the chemical composition of passive films on the surface.
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