Coatings manufacturer PPG Aerospace has launched a new range of coatings which it claims will help to cut cabin temperatures by 5°F–7°F when an aircraft is on the ground.
PPG says its solar-heat-management coatings have been inspired by the way in which aubergines remain cool in the sunshine – by transmitting heat from its dark skin into its white flesh which then reflects the radiation back out.
Similarly PPG has designed pigments that transmit radiation to a white underlayer that reflects the solar heat away from the aircraft.
The firm claims that the paint can reduce external aircraft skin temperatures by up to 25°F.
“Airlines often avoid dark colours for airplane liveries because they can absorb as much as 90 per cent of solar energy, which in turn heats the interior while a plane is on the ground,” said Mark Cancilla, PPG global director for aerospace coatings.
“Our innovative paint technology means airlines no longer have to avoid dark colours. In fact, the darker the colour, the greater the difference there is in total solar reflectance.”