A response to the chemical or biological contamination of aircraft requires the use of a suitable decontaminant. Among possible chemical decontaminants, vapour phase hydrogen peroxide appears to be a likely candidate in terms of a combination of efficacy, low environmental impact and potential for materials compatibility. The present paper examines the effect of hydrogen peroxide, both in the vapour phase and as a liquid concentrate on two common structural materials used in aviation, namely 2024 and 7075 age hardenable aluminium alloys and on 304 austenitic stainless steel, the latter as employed in galley and lavatory surfaces. The present paper characterises both the effects of hydrogen peroxide on the microstructure of the materials and the impact that decontamination has on the tensile properties and corrosion resistance of these materials. Microstructural effects are both relatively small in magnitude and confined to a region immediately beside the exposed surface. No systematic effect is found on either the tensile properties or the post-exposure corrosion resistance of the three alloys examined. These observations are encouraging in terms of the use of vapour phase hydrogen peroxide for decontamination applications.
- Age hardenable aluminium alloys
- Austenitic stainless steels
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Tensile properties