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7 July 1995 Novel methods for aircraft corrosion monitoring
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Monitoring aging aircraft for hidden corrosion is a significant problem for both military and civilian aircraft. Under a Wright Laboratory sponsored program, Boeing Defense & Space Group is investigating three novel methods for detecting and monitoring hidden corrosion: (1) atmospheric neutron radiography, (2) 14 MeV neutron activation analysis and (3) fiber optic corrosion sensors. Atmospheric neutron radiography utilizes the presence of neutrons in the upper atmosphere as a source for interrogation of the aircraft structure. Passive track-etch neutron detectors, which have been previously placed on the aircraft, are evaluated during maintenance checks to assess the presence of corrosion. Neutrons generated by an accelerator are used via activation analysis to assess the presence of distinctive elements in corrosion products, particularly oxygen. By using fast (14 MeV) neutrons for the activation, portable, high intensity sources can be employed for field testing of aircraft. The third novel method uses fiber optics as part of a smart structure technology for corrosion detection and monitoring. Fiber optic corrosion sensors are placed in the aircraft at locations known to be susceptible to corrosion. Periodic monitoring of the sensors is used to alert maintenance personnel to the presence and degree of corrosion at specific locations on the aircraft. During the atmospheric neutron experimentation, we identified a fourth method referred to as secondary emission radiography (SER). This paper discusses the development of these methods.
© (1995) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Richard H. Bossi, Thomas L. Criswell, Roy Ikegami, James Nelson, Eugene Normand, Paul S. Rutherford, and John E. Shrader "Novel methods for aircraft corrosion monitoring", Proc. SPIE 2455, Nondestructive Evaluation of Aging Aircraft, Airports, Aerospace Hardware, and Materials, (7 July 1995);


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