Going to Great Heights to Protect Client Infrastructure

Date:October 2016
Capability:   Cathodic Protection
Location:United States
cathodic protection

Aegion’s Corrosion Protection inspection group consists of NACE and SSPC trained coatings inspectors who will go just about anywhere to inspect a coating application project. One of our more interesting assignments was a recent overcoat painting project atop antenna towers.


The towers are approximately 1,000 feet tall and have been in place for decades. Because there is no miracle paint product that will last forever, maintenance painting is necessary to protect the integrity of the structures from corrosion. The structures are located in a marine atmosphere in close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and require chloride contamination testing and remediation. The color scheme for these antennas is set by FAA guidelines due to their height. White and orange are alternated every 100 feet, adding a level of complexity to the project.


The general scope of work began with pressure washing the entire structure to remove any dirt, dust, chalk residue or loose paint from the old existing coating. Power tool cleaning and feathering off of all chipped areas was required in areas where old paint was removed. Two coats of primer were then applied to those areas prior to application of the appropriate colored topcoat.

Accessing all points on these towers required personnel to take a specialty tower climbing safety class. Additionally, specific safety 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 safety equipment was provided.

The work, which began at the top of the structures and moved downward, was inspected at each step of the process. This required many trips up and down the towers. A winch system was required to bring personnel, equipment and coatings products up the exterior of the towers. This winch system delivered a basket with materials and personnel to permanent platforms at various levels of the structures. The platforms were helpful, but the limited number required extensive climbing between them to get close enough to inspect all areas being prepared and coated.

Throughout the project, daily inspection reports documenting every aspect of the work along with photos to show compliance with project specifications were generated. These reports were provided to the owner along with all other documents generated during the process throughout the duration of the project.


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