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CORROSION

PREVENTION MANUAL

TASK 51-00-01-910-001-A
EFFECTIVITY: ALL
ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS

1. General

A. Corrosion damage to an aircraft can occur as the result of these factors:

• The type of protection that the aircraft receives during manufacture.

• The maintenance of the protection during the service life of the aircraft.

• The environment in which the aircraft operates.

B. The manufacturer or operator can control some of the causes of corrosion. Some of these causes are
fumes or spillage in the battery compartment, or spillage from galleys or lavatories. They cannot control
environmental factors such as salt particles or pollutants in the atmosphere.

2. Environment

A. The environment has many factors that can cause corrosion. These are some of the factors:

(1) Marine atmosphere.

(a) The atmosphere in areas near salt water usually contains airborne salt particles. The de-
gree of salt in the water, high temperatures, and the direction of winds can cause changes
in the corrosive properties of the atmosphere. It is a fact that saltwater can cause electrolyt-
ic corrosion.

(2) Contaminated atmosphere.

(a) The atmosphere in industrial areas usually contains pollutants. These pollutants mix with
water and become corrosive liquids. For example, sulphur compounds become sulphur-
based acids. The wind can carry these pollutants from an industrial plant near an airport to
the aircraft parking area.

(3) Rainfall.

(a) Moderate rainfall in temperate or cold climates is not an environmental problem. But heavy
rainfall or hail can cause damage to the aircraft finish and help corrosion to start. Those
areas with tropical rains have a hot atmosphere with high humidity. This environmental con-
dition causes corrosion.

(4) Temperature and Relative Humidity.

(a) An environment with high relative humidity and temperatures has a high saturation of water
in the atmosphere. This environmental condition can cause corrosion in parked aircraft. Af-
ter the aircraft takes off, condensation occurs and the corrosion process starts. But high rel-
ative humidity at low temperatures is not a corrosion problem. The best environmental con-
dition is that with high temperatures and low relative humidity because the wet areas on the
aircraft dry quickly.

(5) Runway Conditions.

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CORROSION
PREVENTION MANUAL

(a) Aircraft that operate from runways with sodium chloride on them for ice removal can receive
corrosive surface deposits.

(6) Operating Altitude.

(a) Aircraft that operate at low altitudes are more subject to the effects of airborne pollutants
and marine atmosphere than aircraft that operate at higher altitudes.

(7) Stage Length.

(a) Aircraft that frequently operate in hot regions with high humidity have more moisture buildup
than aircraft used on long stage lengths. This is because the aircraft receives a new supply
of air saturated with water each time it lands. The air saturated with water will condense in
the subsequent flight.

(8) Volcanic Gases.

(a) In some regions, the atmosphere can contain corrosive gases from active volcanoes. There
is also a zone which is downwind of active volcanoes where fallout (ash) can occur.

(9) Airborne Abrasives.

(a) Airborne sand or coral dust has an erosive effect on the aircraft finish. It can go into the
faying surfaces of moving parts or into bearings. This can cause wear or corrosion of those
metal parts that have no protection. Abrasive particles, such as beach sand, can also be
corrosive.

B. There are three operating environment categories as follows (Figure 1):

(1) Severe.

(a) Areas with a marine atmosphere or an industrial atmosphere that contains contaminants
are in the severe environment category. Hot and humid tropical areas are also in the severe
environment category.

(2) Moderate.

(a) Temperate regions with characteristics that are different from marine or industrial atmos-
pheres are in the moderate environment category.

(3) Mild.

(a) Warm arid zones or areas subject to very low temperatures are in the mild environment cat-
egory. The use of chemicals on runways and taxiways to prevent ice formation can transfer
"cold zones" to the severe environment category.

Embraer 195 - CPM 4132 910-001-A


Part 1 51-00-01 Page 2 of 3
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CORROSION
PREVENTION MANUAL

EFFECTIVITY: ALL
Environment Severity Map
Figure 1

MODERATE

SEVERE
MILD

EM170CPM510001.DGN

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Copyright © 2010 by Embraer - Empresa Brasileira de Aeronáutica S.A. All rights reserved.