This article describes the four major conditions that can cause beryllium to corrode in air. These include beryllium carbide particles exposed at the surface; surface contaminated with halide, sulfate, or nitrate ions; surface contaminated with other electrolyte fluids; and atmosphere that contains halide, sulfate, or nitrate ions. The article provides information on the behavior of beryllium under the combined effects of high-purity water environment, stress and chemical environment, and high-temperature environment. The compositions of the structural grades for intentionally controlled elements and major impurities are tabulated. The article discusses in-process problems and procedures with beryllium and aluminum-beryllium composites to prevent corrosion during processing, handling, and storage. It also describes the types of coatings used on beryllium and aluminum-beryllium. These include chemical conversion coatings, anodized coatings, plated coatings, organic coatings, and plasma-sprayed coatings.
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