Galvanic corrosion for medical devices


Zimmer and Peacock has a unique focus on medical devices and medical diagnostics and the application of core competency of electrochemistry to the products, markets and applications.


On this page we discuss  corrosion for medical devices and diagnostics.



Galvanic corrosion is a risk at the junction between two metals where three conditions are met:


  1. CONDITION ONE - The two metals are galvanically incompatible, which can be assessed from the Galvanic Corrosion Risk Table.
  2. CONDITION TWO - An salty solution/electrolyte is present.
  3. CONDITION THREE -The two metals are in electrical contact with one another.



When you have two or more metals in electrical contact with one another and in the presence of an aqueous solution then one runs the risk of preferential corrosion of one or more metals  through a process called galvanic corrosion. 


In the figure below the risk of galvanic corrosion from two dissimilar metals being in contact with one another can be assessed.

A individual metal, alloy or metalloid to corrode can in part be seen from the table below. Whether two metals in electrical connection and meeting the three conditions above will undergo galvanic corrosion is in part predicted when they have a voltage difference of 0.2 V or greater.

Corrosion of medical devices can be exacerbated or impeded by electroplating, Please see ZP's standard electroplating solutions,.


Please feel free to contact ZP regarding our expertise, services and products in corrosion and electroplating for medical diagnostics and medical