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Study of Post-World War II French Aeronautical Aluminium Alloy and Coatings: Historical and Materials Science Approach

Abstract : In many countries, collections of ancient aircraft, conserved in Air and Space museums or local associations, reflect the importance of a national or local history. Mostly parked outdoor, aircraft suffer from important corrosion requiring conservation operations. During renovation, metallic parts are often replaced by association members. This can lead to a major loss of information since industrial archives dealing with materials and processes were not necessarily conserved. However, if these elements can be considered, they could be a fundamental source of information on the materials originally used and of the technical history of aeronautics. This work reports a thorough study of aluminium-based alloys parts collected on a Breguet aeroplane dating from the 1950s, during its recent renovation. Thanks to an approach coupling multi-scale material characterisation and researches in archives, information on the industrial know-hows are revealed. Several historic grades of aluminium-based alloys were found, namely A-U4G, A-U4G1 and A-U3G, depending on the role of the part. Similarly, different protective coatings were identified (anodic oxidation, primers and paintings), depending on the role of the metallic part and its location in the plane. The knowledge of the materials from bulk to the coated surface is necessary for a good conservation practice of the aeronautics heritage artefacts. Related documents and archives also help fundamentally the understanding of such complex cultural heritage systems.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, May 15, 2019 - 4:02:01 PM
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Magali Brunet, Audrey Cochard, Christophe Deshayes, Chantal Brouca-Cabarrecq, Luc Robbiola, et al.. Study of Post-World War II French Aeronautical Aluminium Alloy and Coatings: Historical and Materials Science Approach. Studies in Conservation, Maney Publishing, 2019, pp.1-15. ⟨10.1080/00393630.2019.1610846⟩. ⟨hal-02127309⟩



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