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Selection and Performance Evaluation of Cathodic Protection Systems for Reinforced Concrete Parking Structures

Published: 19880201 by NACE International
Author(s): Robert Gummow

The possibility that cathodic protection (CP) could successfully reduce corrosion on reinforced concrete structures exposed to the atmosphere was postulated by Finley in 1961 and later attempted on bridge decks by Stratfull and Fromm during the 1970’s. Much of the research work into the types and operating characteristics of CP systems has been funded by the U.S. Federal Highways Administration which as a result issued a memorandum on December 31, 1981 that concluded “Research and field experiences with cathodic protection (CP) on the other hand, show that corrosion damage can be halted regardless of the salt content of the concrete”. Although bridge structures are particularly susceptible to corrosion arising from the combined presence of air, moisture and chlorides from de—icing salts so also are reinforced concrete parking facilities. The earliest developed CP systems used a conductive asphalt overlay electronically connected to high silicon iron anodes but this type of system is not feasible for parking structures because of the inability of the parking reinforced structural slabs to support the substantial weight of the overlay.