Aegion’s Corrosion Protection inspection group consistsof NACE and SSPC trained coatings inspectors who will gojust about anywhere to inspect a coating application project.One of our more interesting assignments was a recentovercoat painting project atop antenna towers.
The towers are approximately 1,000 feet tall and have beenin place for decades. Because there is no miracle paintproduct that will last forever, maintenance painting isnecessary to protect the integrity of the structuresfrom corrosion. The structures are located in a marineatmosphere in close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean andrequire chloride contamination testing and remediation.The color scheme for these antennas is set by FAA guidelinesdue to their height. White and orange are alternated every100 feet, adding a level of complexity to the project.
The general scope of work began with pressure washingthe entire structure to remove any dirt, dust, chalk residueor loose paint from the old existing coating. Power toolcleaning and feathering off of all chipped areas was requiredin areas where old paint was removed. Two coats of primerwere then applied to those areas prior to application of theappropriate colored topcoat.
Accessing all points on these towers required personnel to takea specialty tower climbing safety class. Additionally, specificsafety harnesses and other related equipment were required.In line with Aegion’s value, ZERO INCIDENTS ARE POSSIBLE,safety on this project was paramount and the necessary safetyequipment was provided.
The work, which began at the top of the structures and moveddownward, was inspected at each step of the process. Thisrequired many trips up and down the towers. A winch systemwas required to bring personnel, equipment and coatingsproducts up the exterior of the towers. This winch systemdelivered a basket with materials and personnel to permanentplatforms at various levels of the structures. The platformswere helpful, but the limited number required extensiveclimbing between them to get close enough to inspect all areasbeing prepared and coated.
Throughout the project, daily inspection reports documentingevery aspect of the work along with photos to show compliancewith project specifications were generated. These reports wereprovided to the owner along with all other documents generatedduring the process throughout the duration of the project.