Advanced Aluminum Alloy Cleaning Methods for Improved Corrosion Resistance

Period of Performance: 02/08/2006 - 02/08/2008

$750K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Luna Innovations, Inc.
301 1st St Suite 200
Roanoke, VA 24011
Principal Investigator

Abstract

The objective of the program is to build on the success of our Phase I program to develop environmentally acceptable surface cleaning methods that improve the corrosion performance of non-chromate coating systems for aircraft aluminum alloys. Through the Phase I effort, Luna Innovations, Inc. has demonstrated the ability to selectively remove detrimental intermetallic particles and prevent copper redeposition. A sample cleaned with Luna s developmental cleaner and coated with a chromate pretreatment had better corrosion performance in electrochemical tests than a similarly coated sample cleaned with a commercial cleaner. In the Phase II project, Luna will continue to optimize these cleaners and demonstrate their compatibility with existing application methods and coating systems. Luna will also quantify corrosion performance improvements that can be achieved using this cleaner with non-chromate coating systems. Electrochemical testing, such as potentiodynamic scans, linear polarization plots and EIS will be used to rapidly screen and optimize the cleaner formulation. The cleaner, pretreatment, primer and full coating systems will be evaluated according to Military specifications (MIL-PRF-87937, MIL-DTL-81706, and MIL-PRF-23377) and the Advanced Performance Coating Specification (SAE AMS G8-03AA). In all cases, samples will be benchmarked against Military qualified products.