Fighter jets are meant to protect us, but how do we protect the nose of our aircrafts?

In 2021, unprecedented sales are recorded for the French fighter aircraft. The Rafale was sold to Egypt, India, Qatar, Greece, Croatia, and the United Arab Emirates, with a historic order for 80 Rafale "F4" aircrafts. This sale secured jobs and increased the need for materials for the construction and finishing of these aircrafts.

SOCOMORE offers a wide range of products for military aircraft: from surface preparation to specific coatings. The new MÄDER AERO portfolio includes products with no CMR components and very low VOC emissions, which are REACh compliant. The protective coatings offer high performance for parts that are subject to heavy erosion such as radomes.

What is an aircraft radome?

The aircraft radome is the "nose" of the aircraft. It is at the forefront of the aircraft. "Radome" is derived from the words “radar” and “dome”. This dome is a weatherproof enclosure. It shelters the weather radar antenna and other sensitive instruments on civil and military jets. It protects from bad weather (eg. rain, wind, hail, etc.) and has a visual protection role. The radome prevents the orientation of the radar antenna from being exposed.

For military aircrafts, the radar's function is to detect targets, guide missiles and map the field. The radome allows the radar to be hidden so that its direction is not revealed. 

Erosion protection coating on fighter aircraftErosion protection coating on fighter aircraft
Aircraft erosion protection solutions

Located at the forefront of the aircraft, the radome is subject to heavy erosion. The radome is made of composite materials requiring specific protection against erosion.

How to protect the radome against erosion?

What is the phenomenon of erosion?

The phenomenon of erosion is also called erosive wear. Erosion is a progressive loss of material. It is due to mechanical interactions between the surface and liquid or solid particles.

Radome protection: the erosion solution you need

It is essential to protect these domes with adapted and durable coatings. SOCOMORE offers a wide range of coatings meant to be used on radomes. These products are qualified for civil and military aircrafts.

Coatings for radomes erosion protection

Reference Product Type Chemical Color Product Properties Areas of use Main specifications
PRIAM CE 111 Epoxy primer Epoxy Glossy grey
Adherence promotor & composite protection
Composite structural parts composite turbine blades engine's environment DMR74-051
16 261 974 - 024
PRIAM 32005 Anti erosion top coat Polyurethane Any color Erosion protection Any substrate exposed to erosion issues: radome, blades DMP 16-030
SM 78026-B
16 261 974 - 024
Inst. 42 199
BOLICOAT Anti erosion top coat Polyurethane Any color Erosion protection Any substrate exposed to erosion issues: radome, blades 585/AIACP/6120/00

Our erosion protection coating

PRIAM 32005 is a two-component polyurethane topcoat. The solution has excellent erosion protection properties against water and sand. It can be used on composite or aluminum substrates, depending on the primer applied.

PRIAM 32005 topcoat is used for civil and military aircraft. PRIAM 32005 is qualified in the aeronautical sector. PRIAM 32005 is used on engine radomes and blades.

What are the characteristics of the PRIAM 32005 topcoat?

PRIAM 32005 is a two-component polyurethane topcoat providing:

  • Very good resistance to sand and water erosion
  • Excellent resistance to graveling
  • Excellent radio transparency
  • Good resistance to humid heat (70°C)
  • Resistance to aeronautical fluids
  • Resistance to low temperatures (-50°C)
  • Good resistance to UV

On which parts should PRIAM 32005 be used?

PRIAM 32005 is used on:

  • aircraft radomes
  • engine parts such as cones, turbine blades, or OGVs (Outlet Guide Valves)

To go further on anti-erosion coatings