This theme concerns the study of ancient aluminum alloys for aeronautics with an approach coupling laboratory analysis and archival research. The corpus is composed of parts from aircrafts restored by the Association Les Ailes Anciennes de Toulouse.
On these alloys, the physicochemical nature, the structure of the crystalline phases present and their organization at different scales are studied by combining various analytical techniques : electron microscopy (scanning, transmission) and associated spectroscopy (EDX, EELS), Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction methods. The analysis concern both healthy and altered metal.
The goals are :
- From a fundamental point of view, enhancing the understanding of the physical mechanisms involved in the aging of materials and material-properties relations in these complex, heterogeneous environments.
- Linking the physicochemical nature of the alloys, the conditions of exposure and the types of observed alterations. This information is essential for the development of practical conservation methods of Cultural Heritage objects : in this case to prevent corrosion of aircrafts materials.
- Documenting materials and their manufacturing and beyond, with a historical point of view, revealing the evolution of aluminum alloys at a time when the aeronautic industry developed significantly. Testimony of volunteers, archives from industrials, technical and scientific documents provide valuable information about the history of aircraft and constituent materials.
Contact : magali.brunet chez cemes.fr