AbstractAn attempt was made to produce calcium containing plasma electrolytic oxidation (PEO) coatings on AM50 magnesium alloy using an alkaline electrolyte. This study was performed in three alkaline electrolytes containing calcium hydroxide and sodium phosphate with three different mass ratios viz., 1:2.5, 1:5 and 1:7.5. All the three coatings produced were found to contain Ca and P in appreciable amounts. The concentration of P was found to be higher in the coatings obtained in the electrolytes with higher concentration of phosphate ions. Even though all the three coatings were found to be constituted with magnesium oxide and magnesium phosphate phases, X-ray diffraction analyses revealed that the phase composition was influenced by the phosphate ion concentration/conductivity of the electrolyte. Further, the PEO coating obtained in the 1:7.5 ratio electrolyte was found to contain di-calcium phosphate (monetite) and calcium peroxide phases, which were absent in the other two coatings. Potentiodynamic polarization studies performed in 0.1 M NaCl solution showed that the coatings obtained from the 1:5 ratio electrolyte possessed a superior corrosion resistance, which is attributed to the combined effect of thickness, compactness and phase/chemical composition of this coating.