As an M&P engineer in the Aerospace industry I became involved in a quality issue of elastomeric aerospace components.
In an audit of one of our suppliers, I saw that the plastic media was used for cleaning off metallic plates in metal-seal assemblies, silica for Viton/Nitrile rubber, and corn for fluorosilicon.
The plastic media fragments eventually, and I worry about those fragments being embedded in the elastomer, creating a flaw, which may cause the part's premature failure in service.

The supplier claims that they replace the media once it gets dusty to obscure visibility through the chamber window. He also claims that judging by the ability to deflash rubber of the metallic portion of the assembly is a good enough indicator.
I think some guidelines should be set.

Do you know of any? or any specs. for that? I know plastic media is used for composites as well, and I would be very surprised to find out there aren't any guidleines for longevity of plastic media.
How about silica or alumina used for metallic blasting?

I appreciate your assistance,


Leah Mar.
Senior Engineer
Materials and Process Engineering