Nowadays new cars mainly consist of the very light metal aluminum and magnesium, which are not directly connected to corrosion. But that isn't quite right. Firstly, other materials are used, such as very thin and therefore very light steel plates for the necessary strength, the so-called high-strength steels, and 3D prints from different metals. Secondly, different types of corrosion can occur.
In the older generation of cars, chromium components were added for the protection against corrosion. However, what was possible then is no longer ethically responsible today. Chromium (VI) in protective coatings is ideal to prevent rusting, but extremely carcinogenic.
At the VUB research group Electrochemical and Surface Engineering, the focus lies more on circular economy and ecology by working with Artificial Intelligence and computer models. These models are first optimized with experimental results and then applied to actual test pieces. They use huge datasets of weather conditions, reaction of different metals and paint layers to the environment, etc.