SOCORRO – Seeking Out Corrosion, before it is too late
Number of Partners: 15
Number of Observing Partners: 32
​Coordinator:  Geert Potters (Hogere Zeevaartschool Antwerpen)
Duration: March 1st, 2020 – July 31st, 2022
Budget: 5,449,833€


Project Overview

An often underestimated threat to our economy is steel corrosion, in any kind of industry where water meets steel: the maritime sector, ports, water purification plants, energy production, offshore renewable energy production. The costs pertaining to corrosion are immense: a DNV-GL report sets all-round corrosion costs at more than 500 billion EUR for the European region alone, generally +/- 3.8% of the European GDP. However consultation with industry indicates there is no general approach to determining where and when corrosion is taking place so that preventative and remedial works can be targeted. Solutions are generic, and there is no overall awareness of possible cost reductions: 25-30% of the corrosion-related costs are superfluous – the baseline for the project. The missing step to achieve this is a comprehensive, quick and easy method to measure the local situation in a range of installations and an increased general awareness that costs can be reduced even further.



This project aims to provide companies with an independent means to assess the corrosion risks in their installations, to increase their awareness and to have them take appropriate preventive actions. To this end, we created a simple, rapid, in situ sensor system able to monitor a range of environmental markers over time to determine the risk of corrosion of steel submerged in water, as well as a statistical method to mine these data for an overall corrosion risk estimate – in short, the SOCORRO system,

set at TRL 4.


In this project, we will implement and demonstrate this whole set-up in several industrial case studies (wind turbines at sea, water desalination/sanitation, ship’s hulls and ballast tanks, harbour sheet piles, process water) and show the economic opportunities. In addition, we will augment the statistical analysis with an intuitive, practical dashboard tool to present the outflow of information and to convey that risk to the end users. This will raise the TRL to 6 or 7.

  • Development of an algorithm to predict corrosion risks based on water quality parameters
  • Data gathering and demonstration of the SOCORRO approach at 11 sites
  • Create more awareness and knowledge on the risks and consequences of corrosion with professionals and the public