Oxide films on magnesium and magnesium alloys

Teng Shih Shih, Jyun Bo Liu, Pai Sheng Wei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Magnesium alloys are very active and readily ignite during heating and melting. In this study, we discuss the combustion of magnesium and magnesium alloys and propose prospective anti-ignition mechanisms for magnesium alloys during the heating process. When magnesium and magnesium alloys were heated in air, the sample surfaces produced layers of thermally formed oxides. These thermally formed oxides played an important role in affecting the combustion of the magnesium and magnesium alloys. When magnesium was heated in air, brucite that formed in the early stage was then transformed into periclase by dehydroxylation. By extending the heating time, more periclase formed and increased in thickness which was associated with microcracks formation. When magnesium was heated in a protective atmosphere (SF6), a film of MgF2 formed at the interface between the oxide layer and the Mg substrate. This film generated an anti-ignition behavior which protected the substrate from oxidation. When solution-treated AZ80 alloy was heated, spinel developed at the interface between the thermally formed oxide layer and the Mg substrate, improving the anti-ignition properties of the substrate. In addition, we also explain the effects of beryllium in an AZB91 alloy on the ignition-proofing behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)497-504
Number of pages8
JournalMaterials Chemistry and Physics
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - 15 Aug 2007


  • Brucite
  • Combustion
  • Magnesium
  • Periclase


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