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Proceedings Paper

Simultaneous monitoring of the corrosion activity and moisture inside aircraft lap joints
Author(s): Kevin R. Cooper; Yupei Ma; John P. Wikswo; Robert G. Kelly
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Paper Abstract

Measurement of the moisture and corrosion rate within occluded regions is difficult because of their inherent restricted access. The objective of this work was to simultaneously measure in situ the ingress and egress of water and the corrosion activity within simulated aircraft lap joints. Fiber optic moisture sensors monitored the presence of the aggressive aqueous environment within pristine and corroded joints whereas the relative corrosion rate inside the joint was monitored using a SQUID magnetometer, which measures the magnetic fields associated with the small electrical currents produced from the corrosion reactions. Water ingress was very rapid (~ 1 mm/min) whereas egress was much slower (< 0.01 mm/min) and spatially non-uniform. Corroded joints dried slower than pristine joints due to the finely porous, hydroscopic nature of the corrosion products. Corrosion activity correlated with moisture in a complex manner. Wetting caused a substantial increase in corrosion activity within the joint in comparison to the dry baseline condition. During drying, a transient increase prior to cessation in corrosion activity occurred due to concentration and increase in aggressiveness of the solution within the joint. This work highlights the efficacy of simultaneously monitoring moisture and the corrosion activity within occluded regions by employing small profile fiber optic sensors and SQUID technique.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 July 2004
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 5391, Smart Structures and Materials 2004: Sensors and Smart Structures Technologies for Civil, Mechanical, and Aerospace Systems, (29 July 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.539865
Show Author Affiliations
Kevin R. Cooper, Luna Innovations, Inc. (United States)
Yupei Ma, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
John P. Wikswo, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
Robert G. Kelly, Univ. of Virginia (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5391:
Smart Structures and Materials 2004: Sensors and Smart Structures Technologies for Civil, Mechanical, and Aerospace Systems
Shih-Chi Liu, Editor(s)

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