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Surface and Interface, Chemical Reactivity of Materials

The "Surface and Interface, Chemical Reactivity of Materials" group works on the corrosion and oxidation phenomena affecting metals and alloys, as well as on the degradation of ceramic materials.


This requires a multidisciplinary approach, including chemistry of solids, metallurgy, mechanics, as well as thermodynamics, crystal chemistry and kinetics.


The research activities of the group are focused on the reactivity of surfaces, with the following general objectives:

- to understand the interactions between a material and its environment;

- to estimate the rates of chemical reactions involved and to model lifetime of metallic system;

- to propose ad hoc solutions to limit degradation.


The different studies cover domains ranging from the automotive industry to aeronautics, passing via applications as diverse as vaporeforming and glass making. Thus, the covered temperature range is typically from 20°C to 1400°C.

The stated intention of these studies is to improve the yield of processes and thus to reduce energy consumption during both the manufacturing and the use of new materials and products.


Three main routes are being followed to limit corrosion, according to the levels of freedom left by the application:

  • Adjustment of alloy composition
  • Change of the oxidizing nature of the environment (gas controlled atmosphere, reducing atmosphere, corrosion inhibitor)
  • Surface treatment (conversion pre-treatment, selective oxidation, etc.) or manufacturing of a protective metallic of intermetallic coating

The mains themes of the group are :

  • Aqueous corrosion and protection of metals and  alloys
  • Oxidation by gases and corrosion involving a liquid phase
  • Development of refractory alloys for high-temperature applications
  • Protective coatings against oxidation and high-temperature corrosion


The "Surface and Interface, Chemical Reactivity of Materials" group is basedon the Artem campus in Nancy. 


The group is composed of 9 lecturers, one emeritus professor and 4 technical staff. It currently hosts 10 PhD students and post-doctoral fellows.


Group supervisor: Stéphane MATHIEU