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Technical Paper

Method Development for Evaluating Microbiological Growth on and Attachment to Aluminum Air Conditioner Evaporator Core Surfaces

Corrosion failures of aluminum air conditioner evaporator cores have been reported in regions where the climate is relatively warm and humid. Microbiologically-influenced corrosion [MIC] has been implicated in these failures. Application of surface-treatment chemicals may inhibit microbiological (bacterial) growth and/or attachment, thereby reducing the potential for MIC. In this study, two laboratory methods were developed to evaluate selected surface-treatment chemicals for their ability to inhibit bacterial growth and reduce bacterial attachment to treated surfaces. Using the developed methods, two controlled-atmosphere brazed aluminum core materials and three surface-treatment chemicals were evaluated. Neither of the untreated core materials was found to inhibit the growth of the bacteria tested.