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Preliminary Investigations Into Corrosion in Anti-Lock Braking Systems



Richard E. Ricker, J L. Fink, Alexander J. Shapiro, L C. Smith, Robert J. Schaefer


In response to vehicle owner complaints about the operation and performance of some antilock braking systems (ABS), the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) began examining components from ABS systems at the Vehicle Research and Test Center (VRTC) in East Liberty, Ohio. These examinations found what appeared to be corrosion deposits in the ABS hydraulic pressure control valves. Suspecting that these observations were the result corrosion of metallic components in brake fluid and that ABS systems with their increased circulation and closer tolerance valves might be more susceptible to corrosion than conventional braking systems, NHTSA requested that NIST conduct some preliminary studies into the nature and scope of metallic corrosion in this environment. The objective of this work is to help NHTSA, industry, and consumers by developing a better understanding of the corrosion phenomena in the ABS environment. The focus of this study is on quantifying corrosion phenomena (corrosion metrology) in this environment.
NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR) - 6233
Report Number


automotive brake fluid, copper iron, corrosion, electrochemistry, glycol, glycol ether, iron


Ricker, R. , Fink, J. , Shapiro, A. , Smith, L. and Schaefer, R. (1998), Preliminary Investigations Into Corrosion in Anti-Lock Braking Systems, NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed April 23, 2024)
Created September 24, 1998, Updated November 10, 2018