Thursday, August 7, 2014

TOP STORY>>Sustaining the fleet for the future

U.S. Air Force photos by Airman 1st Class Scott Poe

The 19th Maintenance Squadron aircraft structural maintenance corrosion control element keeps C-130s looking new over the horizon. The corrosion control element is responsible for preventing and repairing corrosion. When a C-130 starts to show signs of deterioration, the corrosion control element is quick to sand it down, smooth it out, prime it and then apply a fresh coat of paint.

The prep work that goes into painting can take hours or even days; depending on the size of the job and the amount of Airmen on the job. The team must cover all the parts not to be sanded or painted and then strip any unwanted paint away. Next they use a solvent to wipe off the entire object to keep it free of dust and debris. This makes for a sharp paint job.

The corrosion control element paints anything from wheels to wings. They also keep aerospace ground equipment looking like new. Creating decals and tail flashes is also in their realm of expertise.

Safety is a huge part of working with all the chemicals and flammable materials they use. Personal protective equipment is used when dealing with these hazardous materials. From head to toe, Airmen stay shielded from the carcinogenic elements by wearing Tyvek suits, forced air respirators and nitrile gloves. Safety is serious and is strictly implemented. In fact, in order to document their work, the photographer is also required to get qualified to wear a respirator. While wearing the respirator, the photographer must also have to wear a Tyvek suit and gloves. The corrosion control element keeps the mission going and all Team Little Rock C-130s looking their best.

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