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Q & A: Different kinds of rust

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Most recent answer: 10/22/2007
Q:
Are there different kindsof rust?
- Anonymous
usa
A:
Yes, there are different kinds of rust. Rust is the common name for iron oxide, and there are at least two oxides of iron I know of that are chemically different. There's FeO and there's Fe2O3. The second one, Fe2O3 has two different crystal structures: trigonal (hematite) and cubic (magnetite). Add some water to the Fe2O3 molecules, and the result is rust. Depending on how many water molecules are attached to each Fe2O3 molecule, you can get different kinds of rust.

Other metals also oxidize, although instead of using the word "rust", we usually call it "corrosion" or just plain "oxidation".

Tom

(published on 10/22/2007)

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