Corrosion Cracking of Aircraft Components
A 2000-T6 aluminum alloy bracket failed in a coastal environment because corrosive chlorides got between the bracket and attachment bolt. The material used for the part was susceptible to stress corrosion under the service conditions. Cracking may have been aggravated by galvanic action between aluminum alloy bracket and steel bolt. To preclude or minimize recurrences, fittings in service should be inspected periodically by dye penetrant for signs of cracking on the end face and within the fitting hole and protected with a suitable coating to exclude damaging chlorides. Also, a 2000-T6 aluminum alloy swivel fitting experienced intergranular corrosion fracture as the result of stress-accelerated corrosion. Corrosion began because of a loose fit between the aluminum swivel fitting and steel tube assembly, which caused fretting. Inadequate maintenance and/or abnormal service operation may have loosened the fitting.