In this study, an electroactive polymer (EAP), poly(2,5-bis(N-methyl-N-hexylamino)phenylene vinylene) (BAM-PPV) was investigated as a potential alternative surface pretreatment for hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI))-based aerospace coatings. BAM-PPV was tested as a pretreatment coating on an aerospace aluminum alloy (AA2024-T3) substrate in combination with a non-Cr(VI) epoxy primer and a polyurethane Advanced Performance Coating (APC) topcoat. This testing was undertaken to determine BAM-PPV's adhesion, corrosion-inhibition, compatibility and survivability in laboratory testing and during outdoor field-testing. BAM-PPV showed excellent adhesion and acceptable corrosion performance in laboratory testing. The BAM-PPV aerospace coating system (BAM-PPV, non-Cr(VI) epoxy primer and polyurethane APC topcoat) was field tested for one year on the rear hatch door of the United States Air Force C-5 cargo plane. After one year of field testing there was no evidence of delamination or corrosion of the BAM-PPV aerospace coating system.
Keywords: accelerated weathering tests; field studies; hexavalent chromium (CrVI); passivation; poly(2,5-bis(N-methyl-N-hexylamino)phenylene vinylene) (BAM-PPV).