Inhibition and promotion of copper corrosion by CTAB in a microreactor system

Caroline M. Murira, Christian Punckt, Hannes C. Schniepp, Boris Khusid, Ilhan A. Aksay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


We report on an optical microscopy technique for the analysis of corrosion kinetics of metal thin films in microreactor systems and use it to study the role of cetyltrimethylammonium bromide surfactant as a corrosion inhibitor in a copper-gold galvanic coplanar microsystem. A minimum in the dissolution rate of copper is observed when the surfactant concentration is ∼0.8 mM. To explain why the inhibitory role of the surfactant does not extend to higher concentrations, we use zero resistance ammetry with separated half cells and show that while the surfactant inhibits cathodic reactions on gold, it also promotes the corrosion of copper because of the catalytic action of bromide counterions. These two competing processes lead to the observed minimum in the dissolution rate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14269-14275
Number of pages7
Issue number24
StatePublished - Dec 16 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Spectroscopy
  • General Materials Science
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Electrochemistry


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