Orange can be an unforgiving color, even with aircraft coatings. But a basecoat-clearcoat system by PPG Industries’ aerospace business selected by Jetstar for its 10th-anniversary livery gave the airline reason to celebrate with an Airbus A320 aircraft painted orange, with white and black lettering and a white star, that should keep its good looks for years to come.
The airline chose DESOTHANE(R) HD/CA 9008 basecoat-clearcoat system by PPG Aerospace because the superior color coverage of the basecoat and high-gloss clear topcoat afforded attractive aesthetics, faster process time and weight savings for related reduced fuel costs.
David Hall, Jetstar Australia and New Zealand chief executive officer, said the aircraft’s bright orange livery had been welcomed by customers and team members.
“The aircraft will be a very familiar sight at ports across the network, and I know our engineering team are delighted with the result,” Hall said.
According to Rich Wilkinson, sales manager at the PPG Aerospace application support center (ASC) in Tullamarine, Victoria, Australia, the basecoat-clearcoat system helped overcome the challenge associated with the orange color.
“Orange is a color that does not normally hide well, so additional coats of paint are usually applied to achieve a good finish, which adds time to the repaint and weight to the aircraft,” Wilkinson said. “But compared with traditional coatings, DESOTHANE HD/CA 9008 basecoats are heavily pigmented and have great opacity, so much less paint needs to be applied, resulting in a significant weight saving and, therefore, lower fuel costs for Jetstar. DESOTHANE HD/CA 9008 basecoats also dry in about two hours, which is four times faster than most high-solids paints, so the aircraft was returned to service a few days earlier than normal.”
DESOTHANE HD/CA 9000 series basecoats are designed to provide color in one coat, and one coat of white and one coat of black were applied to the aircraft. However, Wilkinson advised application of a second orange coating to achieve the color saturation Jetstar desired.
DESOTHANE HD/CA 9008 clearcoat was applied over the orange, white and black basecoat colors to give the aircraft a high-gloss shine. It provides extended service life, improved buffability and a smoother surface that is easier to clean.
Despite extreme application conditions of 30 C (86 F) and 80 percent relative humidity, DESOTHANE HD/CA 9008 basecoat-clearcoat performed well, according to Doug McDougal, Jetstar maintenance, repair and overhaul manager, South East Asia.
Wilkinson said the PPG Aerospace ASC in Singapore provided technical support during the repainting, which was done by ST Aerospace Engineering, a Singapore-based airframe maintenance, repair and overhaul subsidiary of ST Aerospace.
“Painters enjoy using this clearcoat because its application properties remain consistent, even in hot and humid conditions like those in Singapore, where this aircraft was painted,” Wilkinson said. “It hangs well so it does not have a tendency to run or sag easily. And because DESOTHANE HD/CA 9008 clearcoat is resistant to degradation by UV light that causes colors and gloss levels to fade, Jetstar has an aircraft that will look fantastic for many more birthdays to come.”
The topcoat was removed for repainting, and the aircraft was treated with P99 etch primer and reprimed with chromate-free PAC33CF primer by PPG Aerospace.