While conventional ovens take a long time to heat and cool steel samples, a light oven can freeze reactions through rapid cooling, to be able to get a glimpse into the initial corrosion mechanisms.
Source: BAM, Image: Michael Danner
The steel samples themselves are quite small; corrosion caused by heating and cooling can, however, be recognised in part with the naked eye.
The crystal structure of the corrosion products is closely investigated using X-ray diffraction.
The crystal structure is analysed by X-ray diffraction both in the laboratory and at synchrotron radiation sources such as BESSY II in Adlershof.
Prof. Christine Stephan can import a lot of analytical experience from the thin-film solar cells research. In addition to her work at BAM, she is also lecturing at the Free University during her junior professorship.