Abrasion on tunnel boring machine (TBM) cutters may be critical in terms of project duration and costs. Several researchers are currently studying the degradation of TBM cutter tools used for excavating hard rock, soft ground and loose soil. So far, the primary focus of this
research has been directed towards abrasive wear. Abrasive wear is a very common process in TBM excavation, but with a view to the environment in which the tools are
working, corrosion may also exert an influence. This paper presents a selection of techniques that can be used to evaluate the influence of corrosion on abrasion on TBM
excavation tools. It also presents the influence of corrosion on abrasive wear for some initial tests, with constant steel and geomaterial and varying properties of the excavation fluids (soil conditioners, anti-abrasion additives and water). The results indicate that the chloride content in the water media greatly influences the amount of wear, providing evidence of the influence of corrosion on the abrasion of the cutting tools. The presence of conditioning additives tailored to specific rock or soil conditions reduces wear. However, when chloride is present in the water, the additives minimise wear rates but fail to suppress corrosion
of the cutting tools.