Inspenet, October 19, 2023.
After four years of research, the European U-CROSS project, led by Cidetec Surface Engineering and supervised by Dassault Aviation, has given promising results in the development of a monitoring system intended for the diagnosis and prognosis of corrosion in aircraft .
Specifically, the project focused on the use of the Acoustic Emission (AE) technique to detect corrosion in its initial stages, which can affect aircraft structures. This allows you to anticipate and prevent critical damage that could jeopardize its structural integrity.
The solution for corrosion in aircraft
The achievements of the U-CROSS project were based on the combination of experimental laboratory research and practical tests in real outdoor conditions. Advanced analysis of the data recorded by Acoustic Emission was essential to develop a monitoring solution capable of identifying the initial stages of localized corrosion, such as pitting and intergranular corrosion, in aluminum alloys, as well as underpaint corrosion, known as filiform corrosion.
On the other hand, through experimental research, models have been established that allow predicting the deterioration of the coating and the useful life of aluminum alloys that are affected by corrosion . These results have been subjected to validation using a monitoring system based on Acoustic Emission (EA) installed on an authentic panel extracted from the structure of a Falcon 7X and exposed to real environmental conditions. This resulted in a precise location of the corrosion points.
This project, integrated into the Clean Sky 2 program, has received funding close to 1.5 million euros and has had the collaboration of the Communaute d’ Universités et Etablissements Université Bourgogne – Franche – Comte (UBFC), Titania Essays Proyectos Industriales SL, Mistras Group SAS and the Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Lyon.
The impact of this project translates into an improvement in aircraft safety, since it allows early detection of corrosion and, therefore, adopting more profitable preventive measures for the sector. In addition, it contributes to the competitiveness of the European aeronautical industry and is aligned with efforts to reduce the environmental impact of aviation and promote its sustainability.