The accretion of ice represents a severe problem for aircraft, as the presence of even a scarcely visible layer can severely limit the function of wings, propellers, windshields, antennas, vents, intakes and cowlings. The PHOBIC2ICE project aimed at developing technologies and predictive simulation tools for avoiding or mitigating this phenomenon. The project, by applying an innovative approach to simulation and modelling, enabled the design and fabrication of icephobic surfaces with improved functionalities. Several types of polymeric, metallic and hybrid coatings using different deposition methods were developed. Laser treated and anodized surfaces were prepared. Consequently, the Project focused on collecting fundamental knowledge of phenomena associated with icephobicity issues. This knowledge gives better understanding of the ice accretion process on different coatings and modified surfaces. Certified research infrastructure (ice wind tunnel) and flight tests aided in developing comprehensive solutions to address ice formation issue and raised the project’s innovation level.
TECHNOLOGY PARTNERS’ ROLE IN THE PROJECT
Project coordination (Europe). Industrially applicable, economically and environmentally friendly modification of polyurethane coatings by chemical, particle and laser methods. Development of several icephobic coatings with improved functionalities, long-term durability and approx. 20% decrease in ice adhesion and accretion – applicable on different type of materials (e.g. steel, aluminium, titanium, polymers) and on different parts/elements of aircrafts. Modelling of droplet behaviour on the substrates conducted on the real geometry of surfaces and materials typical for developed coatings, allowing for the transfer of the knowledge gained to other fields of interest. Flight tests and rotating parts tests in large ice wind tunnel. Acquisition of fundamental knowledge of phenomena associated with icephobicity and hydrophobicity.