It is critical for the aeronautical industry that the next generation of smart coatings allows the early detection and continuous monitoring of corrosion. Once corrosion is detected, preventive actions can be taken in order to mitigate its costs. Our strategy relies on functional coatings capable of detecting metallic corrosion early on. After appropriate selection of sensing compounds and subsequent loading into nanostructured materials , these are incorporated into coating formulations giving them corrosion sensing functionality. Based on this concept we focused on the compatibility between nanocontainers and coating formulations. Thus, a new sensing coating was investigated using immersion and salt-spray tests, release and leaching studies, viscoelastic properties, curing, thermal stability, hardness, mechanical properties and corrosion resistance. The results embody a new generation of coatings with sensing ability, and have implications for self-healing and anti-fouling coatings as well.
Key words: Corrosion, sensors, coatings, pH indicator molecules, silica nanocapsules, controlled release.