In the late ’70’s the US Navy put out a commission for companies to develop and supply some form of treatment to tackle the millions of dollars worth of corrosion damage being caused to their carrier borne jet fighters.
The only other product available at that time, WD40, was designed for static situations and would not last on fast jets, more critically it’s high solvent content and low flash point made it a potential fire risk.
Lear Chemicals of Canada was one of the companies to tender. Their product ACF50 was just one of several tested by the Navy over the following year. At the end of testing the Navy concluded that ACF50 reduced corrosion and corrosion related failures by over 60%
Lear also pioneered the development of a delivery system to atomise the product using high pressure compressed air. Now, by using adapted spray guns and rods they could apply the ACF50 deep into the airframe avoiding the need to strip the aircraft down.
ACF50 has sometimes been compared to a fellow water displacement and repellent product, WD40. However, one is 1950s technology, the other 21st century. It’s like comparing a modern CD to a Vinyl record, they both play music but after that the similarities end.
Proven to work in the harshest environments, Lear continued to develop and improve their product. Today most of the worlds major airline operators as well as the military use ACF50 as part of the regular maintenance on their aircraft.