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GLRPPR Sector Resource: Chromate/Hazardous Material Free Coating Systems for Military Aircraft and Ground Support Equipment

Chromate/Hazardous Material Free Coating Systems for Military Aircraft and Ground Support Equipment

Non-Chromated Paint Primers by Ms. Julia Russell and Ms. Brenna Lynn Skelley

Non-chromated primers need additional maturation and validation to be more thoroughly and rapidly implemented on Department of Defense (DoD) weapon systems. The objectives of ESTCP project WP-201132 are to: provide an overarching assessment of the current state of the art; support the maturation of promising products; field test mature products; document organization-specific assessment and implementation requirements; and revise specifications to account for new products. The project brings together users from Army Aviation and Ground, Navy Air and Ships, Air Force, Marine Corps Ground and Amphibious, Coast Guard, and NASA to establish application needs, as well as target laboratory assessments and field tests to provide sufficient data to make implementation decisions for new non-chromated primers. Validating the equipment, process, and coating are key. For example, newer technologies like e-coat and force cured (ultraviolet, infrared, thermal) resins require additional equipment to deposit or cure the coating. Projects of these types are therefore more complicated and generally more expensive than those focused on improved traditional spray paint-based primers. For use across DoD organizations, alternatives need to be characterized as stand-alone products that can be implemented on a variety of different surfaces, and topcoated with a variety of different materials and within prescribed coating systems -- which are qualified and used in particular combinations. Expected benefits include increased and more rapid implementation of non-chromate primers on DoD weapon systems by DoD users during maintenance, and by original equipment manufacturers and sub-contractors during design and construction of new equipment.

Non-Chromate Outer Moldline (OML) Coating System Transition Effort by Mr. Michael Spicer

In order to comply with environmental and workplace regulations, the U.S. Air Force is striving to replace chromate containing corrosion protection systems. Eight complete non-chromate coating systems have been evaluated against two chromate coating systems using extensive outdoor exposure testing at Daytona Beach and Tyndall Air Force Base. The results suggest that the best of the non-chromate coating systems actually offer superior performance compared to the environmentally problematic chromate containing coating systems. Non-chromate coating systems have been utilized by the U.S. Air Force on the F-15 fleet since January 2012, by the Norwegian Air Force since January 2012, on German Tornados and P3-C Orions since May 2012, and on Italian C-130s since July 2012. The U.S. Air Force is utilizing an enterprise approach to expedite the adoption of non-chromate corrosion protection systems throughout the fleet where applicable. Air Force senior leaders have endorsed non-chromate coating systems and recommended the development of implementation plans. The Corrosion Prevention and Control Office, Air Force Research Laboratory Coating Technology Integration Office, Air Logistical Centers, and paint manufacturers will participate in the non-chromate transition, including classroom time and hands-on training. The Air Force is minimizing risks inherent in the introduction of new materials by first applying the new, non-chromate coating systems on low corrosion-prone aircraft based in low corrosion environments (which began in March 2014). The implementation team will determine if implementation should then be extended to moderate corrosive environments and less corrosion-resistant systems after reviewing two year results.


U.S. Department of Defense

Resource Type:

Date of Publication:
February 2017

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