Cigarette Butts Could be Used to Coat Steel Pipes

Tan Ee Lyn of Reuters reports in “China Scientists Find use for Cigarette Butts,” that a study conducted by Chinese researchers, appears to show that nine chemicals identified from cigarette butts, including nicotine, protected steel from rusting. The article posted on NewsDaily, states that the corrosion of steel pipes in the oil industry, costs oil companies millions of dollars per year in replacement or repair.

Researchers used a specific type of steel called N80 that is chiefly used for oil well casing and tubing. The N80 type of steel resisted corrosion – even under harsh conditions, after it was smeared with a nine chemical compound that scientists had extracted from cigarette butts soaked in water. The research is published in the journal Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research.

Guy D. Davis, a materials consultant based in Baltimore, Maryland told Gillian Wong of the Associated Press that “Tobacco seems to be one of the best plant-based inhibitors” but it has limitations. Over a period of time, tobacco feeds mold and “Develops an obnoxious odor,” added Davis.