Polymer coatings can be used to mitigate the corrosion of steel in high chloride environments. Obtaining speciation information from thin corrosion layers can be important for understanding corrosion mechanisms, including polymer coating failure. This study outlines the effectiveness of collecting glancing angle X-ray absorption near edge spectroscopy (GA-XANES) spectra at the Fe K-edge to obtain chemical speciation information at the polymer-steel interface without removal of the polymer film. The depth of penetration of the incident X-rays can be altered by changing the incidence angle, allowing for more fluorescence signal from corrosion products to be detected relative to the Fe metal fluorescence signal in GA-XANES spectra. This study demonstrates the use of GA-XANES to study thin layers of steel corrosion and obtain depth profile information of steel corrosion products beneath a polymethyl methacrylate polymer coating.

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