Directly correlating lifetime to coating composition by using standardized, artificial exposures, or even natural exposure, is often very difficult. However, significant progress can be made by breaking down the problem into smaller questions, which can be separately addressed. If one understands the physical parameters that affect end-use properties, then one can also group, and thus correlate, properties according to whether they depend on processes at the surface or in the bulk of a coating, or whether they depend on defects. A scheme is presented that shows how one can use knowledge from analytical physical or chemical materials science in a statistical model related to the "chemical paradigm." Simple physical models that use this information, about the initial state of the coating and its rate of degradation, can be used to compare the performance of coatings and estimate, simply, service lifetime depending on the property of interest, in the environment of interest. One can see that different properties are sensitive in different ways to the degradation process and decay with a different rate. Thus, although properties may be determined by the same degradation process, and location within a coating, they do not correlate directly. These approaches show how to organize our knowledge of degradation processes, and environments, and be able to make some testable predictions on how coating properties deteriorate.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Acknowledgments This work was supported by the Army Research Laboratory, Contract No. W911NF-04-2-0029 and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, contract number FA9599-04-1-0368.
- Service Lifetime