Chennai, 20th January 2023: According to the CORCON Institute of Corrosion, the global cost of corrosion is $2.5 trillion per year, which equates to 3-4 percent of global GDP and about 4% in India. Infrastructure failure due to corrosion has an impact on infrastructure, which has an impact on the economy. The International Zinc Association, the only industry association committed completely to the interests of zinc and its consumers, held a press conference on ‘Cutting the Cost of Corrosion on Infrastructure’ today in Chennai to examine these pressing concerns and find solutions.
Highlighting the concerns over corrosion and its impact on infrastructure and public safety, the experts including Prof. Radhakrishna G Pillai, IIT Madras; Dr. Rahul Sharma, Director (India) – International Zinc Association and Tomy Sebastian, Founder, Verantes Living stressed on the need for a thorough corrosion protection mechanism that will not only ensure infrastructure longevity but also minimize economic and environmental damages. Amongst the many issues, Galvanizing technologies (process of applying zinc coating to a more noble metal like steel or iron), Applications for existing and new structures, Indian and global examples of galvanized structures and applications for Smart Cities was also discussed.
Commenting on this, Prof. Radhakrishna G Pillai, IIT Madras said, “India is seeing massive infrastructure expansion as a result of the government’s efforts and notable projects like the Smart Cities Mission. At the same time, we have witnessed that structures in many parts of India, especially coastal India, are prone to steel corrosion – leading to deteriorated and unsafe structures, accidents, loss of human life and infrastructure, and associated economic burden to the country. With this seminar, we aim to create more awareness about durable concrete, steel reinforcement, and practices to support India’s efforts towards the development of sustainable and durable infrastructure and GDP growth.”
The seminar was attended by some of the leading corporates and senior authorities from Tamil Nadu PWD department, Chennai Metro Rail Corporation, Greater Chennai Corporation, IIT Madras, Intertouch, CPWD officials, Crescent Institute of Technology amongst others – who came together and debated on the pressing issues of corrosion.
Addressing the gathering, Dr. Rahul Sharma – Director (India), International Zinc Association said, “It is very important to reiterate the role of infrastructure in any country’s growth and development. International Zinc Association, with the help of Hindustan Zinc Limited – world’s largest zinc company – has always focused on creating awareness around the implementation of zinc as a performance enhancing material system. Through this platform we want to address the need of longevity and protection of countries’ premium infrastructure systems and call for the need to adopt durable and proven corrosion protection methods, like structure galvanisation. We plan to organize similar awareness campaigns in other states of India”.
Initiatives undertaken by IZA to minimize corrosion in India:
- In most areas of the world, railroad tracks are replaced due to mechanical wear, but in India, they are subject to premature failure due to corrosion. This is a costly and preventable expense and IZA is working with the Ministry of Railways to demonstrate the effectiveness of zinc coatings for controlling corrosion.
- IZA is undertaking a demonstration trial using thermal sprayed zinc to prevent corrosion of the rail support webs. The trial has recently concluded and results showed significant improvement in rail life with thermal spraying, and it is expected the railways will move for system-wide adoption of thermal sprayed rails.
- In addition to thermal spray, India is undertaking a massive rail station refurbishment program and IZA continues its work with the Ministry to educate them on the importance of specifying galvanizing to protect and extend the life of the steel signs, poles and ancillary structures.
- IZA has also launched an education and outreach program aimed at non-railway projects including pedestrian and vehicle bridges, sign supports, safety barriers and fencing and steel culverts for drainage control.
- IZA has been continuously hosting technology seminars to specifying agencies, offering presentations and info exhibits at construction industry events, and launching a galvanized rebar focus group.
About International Zinc Association
The International Zinc Association (IZA) was created in 1991 by a group of leading zinc & steel producers to represent the zinc industry globally. IZA’s activities are to sustainably grow markets and maintain the industry’s license to operate through effectively managed initiatives in research and development, technology transfer, and communication of the value of zinc. Operating internationally and locally through its regional affiliates, IZA helps sustain the long-term global demand for zinc and its markets by promoting such key end uses as corrosion protection for steel and the essentiality of zinc in human health and crop nutrition.
IZA’s main programs are Sustainability & Environment, Technology & Market Development and Communications. Headquartered in Durham, North Carolina (USA), IZA also operates regionally through their offices in China, Europe, Latin America, North America, India and Southern Africa.