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News

Critical protection for aircraft

3M Europe : 30 September, 2003  (New Product)
3M Polyurethane Protective Tapes have been constructed to satisfy the broad range of aircraft surfaces requirement shielding.
Aviation, whether for passenger transportation or rapid cargo shipment, is among the world’s most capital-intensive industries. Consequently for the aircraft operator maximising his investment is vital, not only for success but, in today’s tough markets, sometimes in order just to survive.

An important contribution to that objective comes through the minimising of unnecessary maintenance and out-of-service costs accruing from damage and wear caused by impacts, abrasions, erosion and fluid contamination of critical aircraft surfaces.

Because exposure to this damage can not be eliminated, as it is caused by most airborne particles, as well as by Foreign Object Debris (FOD impacts) on taxiways and runways, aircraft need to be protected against its affects. And, this shielding against damage is available in the form of surface protection film.

But, to be effective, different types of surface require application-specific solutions. The leading edges of wings, struts and both horizontal and vertical stabilisers present different demands to those, for example, of wing and stabiliser tips or wing flaps, antennas, the fuselage or landing gear pods. Moreover, protection of interior components, such as floor beams, from penetration by fluids, present yet other criteria to be met.

In this high-tech, harsh operating environment of complex structures and geometries, it is clear that there can be no ‘one system fits all’ answer to aviation’s needs. There is, however, a family of solutions to preventable damage. 3M™ Polyurethane Protective Tapes have been constructed to satisfy the broad range of aircraft surfaces requirement shielding. Each dedicated to a specific area of exposure, 3M Polyurethane Protective Tapes are developed from a highly durable, UV-light stabilised thermoplastic elastomer backed with a unique high performance pressure sensitive acrylic adhesive system.

Formulated to resist degradation from ultra violet light, impacts, punctures, erosion and fluids common to the aerospace environment, this family of tapes has an extensive history of surface protection in commercial, business, civilian and military aviation applications. Available in black and white, transparent and transparent black, matt and gloss, the range of 3M protective tapes is complemented by 3M Polyurethane Protective Boots, which provide an optimised shielding solution for surfaces with complex curvatures.
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