DECATUR, Ill., June 25, 2012 – The U.S. Department of Defense (U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy and U.S. Army) and U.S. Coast Guard have selected Archer Daniels Midland Company’s (NYSE: ADM) eStrip™ GPX specification-approved blast medium to clean and remove aircraft coatings during program maintenance. EStrip™ GPX is a starch graft copolymer that is 97 percent biobased. This product exhibits mechanical properties similar to starch abrasives, but performance characteristics similar to plastic media.
“ADM is proud to provide the U.S. military one of the most gentle and renewably-sourced abrasive products available in the market to maintain and repair the country’s aircraft fleets,” said Cameron Drake, national sales manager of abrasive products at ADM. “EStrip™ GPX combines the best features of both plastic and starch abrasives to deliver nose-to-tail coating removal capability.”
EStrip™ GPX offers safe and effective removal of coatings and adhesive materials from sensitive metallic surfaces and composite materials alike. The starch graft acrylic copolymer removes virtually every coating, from common epoxy and polyurethane paints to advanced standard and high frequency low observable coatings used on some of the most advanced aircraft. In some cases, eStrip™ GPX performs faster than other media and speeds up the maintenance, repair or overhaul process.
Military aircraft are now expected to endure longer lifespans than in the past, so gentle abrasive media are extremely important. EStrip™ GPX was created for longer-lasting, legacy aircraft using thin aluminum substrates, such as B52s and F18s, as well as newer advanced composite planes, like JSFs and F22s, and effectively removes coatings from both surfaces without damage or alteration.
Additionally, eStrip™ GPX is registered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture BioPreferred® program, which promotes increased purchase and use of biobased products, as a Round 8 blast media. Products registered in this category meet a minimum standard of 94 percent biobased content.
“The aerospace industry has seen many aircraft coating removal technologies that have come and gone over the years, but ADM continues to advance the use of its dry stripping product line as technology progresses, and we will only continue to grow stronger in the future,” added Drake.
In addition to military aerospace use, one of the world’s largest commercial airlines also recently adopted ADM blast media technology. ADM provided the company a new process to effectively de-paint aircraft composite components improving efficiency and reducing workplace hazards.
ADM’s line of biobased dry stripping products also includes OEM-approved Envirostrip™, a wheat starch media which is used by Northrop Grumman for the B2 aircraft program as well as several other major aircraft OEMs, and Envirostrip™ XL, a corn hybrid polymer which is used by a number of commercial aircraft maintenance facilities to remove coatings from expensive composite and aluminum parts.
For more information about ADM’s portfolio of biobased dry stripping products, visit www.envirostrip.com.
About ADM Biobased Industrial Products
ADM has more than 100 years of experience producing industrial biobased products. The first product offered for sale by the Daniels Linseed Company in 1902 was linseed oil, which is still used in industrial applications such as paints and varnishes.