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Outdoor Exposure Performance of Anodized Finishes

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Outdoor Exposure Performance of Anodized Finishes

Barry R. Ellard, Consultant to Alcan Corporation


ABSTRACT ---The durability of anodized finishes for exterior applications is generally
well recognized. These types of finishes have been used in major construction projects for
60 years. However, specific questions are still asked regarding the exact warrantees that
should be given for anodized finishes. Over many years Alcan has been involved with
anodizing processes and anodized finishes. Most of these finishes have been exposed
outdoors at rural, marine, and industrial sites for extended exposure periods. What has
been their performance? This paper gives a unique insight into the performance of clear
anodized, electrolytic 2-step and interference type finishes over a 20-year exposure
period. The author explains how the different types of environment may affect their
performance, and explores the conditions that should be used to obtain finishes of the
required quality for a particular application. Previous investigations on this topic have
looked at the short-term performance of anodized finishes with particular reference to
blooming and chalking, but this paper has been the perfect opportunity to put the accent
on proven long-term corrosion resistance.

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