Chromium-6 salts are a very good protection against corrosion as soon as coating damage occurs. It is therefore a good insurance policy for long-term protection against corrosive environmental conditions.
There are still (many)industrial coatings available on the market in which chromium-6 salts have been added. Our estimate is that approximately 40% of the industrial coatings applied worldwide still contain chromium-6 compounds.
This is because of the excellent corrosion resistant properties of chromium-6. There is a lot of research going on to find alternative components that can be added to primers to approach these excellent self-healing properties. And there are two relevant developments underway at the moment:
- A coating in which magnesium is added is being developed. In this, magnesium reacts with oxygen.
- A second direction is the addition of lithium to the primer. This is a promising development, in which the addition of lithium leads to approximately the same effect as chromium-6 salts.
NOTE: In many cases, chromium-6 salts are not mentioned separately on a material safety data sheet (MSDS). This does not, therefore, provide a basis for assessing whether Chromium-6 has been added to the coating product. It is suspected that chromium-6 is added to coating products on a much larger scale than is currently known. Only an analysis (or several) will give a good indication of whether or not chromium-6 salts have been added. If your are not sure about the presence of chromium-6 salts, make sure that you are wearing suitable PPE.