2.1 Significance of Corrosion
The deterioration and destruction of metals as a result of reaction with the environment is a phenomenon that has been observed since the earliest use of metals. Corrosion, however, was not recognised as a serious problem until the development of modern industrial technology. Very likely, the monetary losses sustained by the military services as a result of corrosion amount to eight billion dollars a year, representing a substantial proportion of the estimated total of 70 billion dollars borne by industrial, community and military segments of the Unites States each year. Because it affects both the economy and the military preparedness, corrosion and corrosion protection remains a subject of extensive research.
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MIL-HDBK-729 was developed for the Department of Defense (DoD) with standard procedures and in compliance with policies and requirements of the Defense Standardization Program (DSP).
DoD Directive 4120.3 establishes, and together with the Defense Standardization Manual 4120, 3-M, 'Standardization Policies, Procedures and Instructions,' implements the DSP. Because of the comprehensive description of the DSP provided in these documents a detailed discussion is not presented here. However, the following definition of Standardization, taken from DoD Directive 4120.3, in effect summarizes the DSP.