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Exhibit Raises Corrosion Awareness

Thursday, May 12, 2016

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Visitors to one Pittsburgh museum expect to learn about science, sports and technology while on site, but they are about to get an education on one more important topic: corrosion.

The Carnegie Science Center, situated on the city’s north shore, has just installed exhibit kiosks that show its guests how corrosion affects city landmarks and military systems, including the USS Requin submarine moored outside.

Corrosion kiosk near Requin
Photos courtesy of Carnegie Science Center

Three new Science Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) kiosks sponsored by the Department of Defense (DoD) Corrosion Policy and Oversight Office are now on view at the Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh.

The three new Science Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) kiosks are meant to give visitors a better understanding of the causes of corrosion and how pervasive it can be through:

  • An interactive projection mapping system of the USS Requin;
  • A sample materials rack simulating real-time environmental testing; and
  • A virtual tour of Pittsburgh that examines the natural phenomena underlying the degradation of facilities and infrastructure familiar to all urban dwellers, as well as military systems operating worldwide.

The Department of Defense (DoD) Corrosion Policy and Oversight Office has sponsored the kiosks, it said in an announcement Tuesday (May 10).

Corrosion on Land and Sea

One of the interactive kiosks connects viewers to the Cold War-era sub USS Requin just outside. A touchscreen digital display opens windows that illustrate how various elements of the submarine succumb to corrosion.

“Military aircraft, ships and vehicles operate in myriad environments and are always susceptible to corrosion,” said Daniel J. Dunmire, director of the DoD Corrosion Office.

“This kiosk allows anyone to appreciate what we’re up against as we fight to preserve our aging military fleets around the globe,” he added.

The “City Tour” display allows guests to see Pittsburgh through the eyes of a corrosion engineer.

Corrosion City Tour

The “City Tour” kiosk allows guests to see Pittsburgh landmarks through the sharp eyes of a corrosion engineer while getting an inside look at how the environment degrades the city’s architectural treasures.

Visitors can see the nearby Duquesne Incline, Heinz Field (home of the Pittsburgh Steelers), Fort Pitt Tunnel and other popular tourist destinations, while getting an inside look at how the environment degrades the city’s architectural treasures.

Environmental Factors

The third display features a corrosion coupon rack placed outside the science center near a window. Here, viewers learn more about how experts conduct testing to evaluate how materials hold up to the environment—in this case, the city’s snow, rain, air and sunlight.

When visitors see how corrosion might affect their home or personal car in this exhibit, they are more likely to appreciate why such testing is vital when DoD builds new weapon systems and preserves older ones, the federal agency says.

In the future, a video-linked duplicate rack at Miami’s Frost Science Center will allow two very different environments to be compared.

"The best exhibitions are those that do not remain the same as they were on opening day,” said Dennis Bateman, Carnegie Science Center director of Exhibits & Theaters. “So we were very pleased to accept the offer of the DoD to add a slate of new interactives for our guests.

Requin intereactive

An interactive kiosk connects viewers to the Cold War-era submarine moored outside the Center; when visitors touch a digital display, windows open, depicting how elements of the submarine succumb to corrosion.

“The linkages with our own USS Requin submarine, the water-based theme of our ‘H2Oh!’ gallery, and some notable Pittsburgh architectural icons take these 'science of corrosion' exhibits from the abstract to the science in our guests’ daily lives, in and around the region,” Bateman added.

About the Sponsor

The DoD Office of Corrosion Policy and Oversight is responsible for conducting the DoD’s Corrosion Prevention and Mitigation Program. DoD acquires, operates and maintains a vast array of physical assets, including military weapons systems and infrastructure. The DoD Corrosion Office develops corrosion prevention and control strategies for the military and oversees their implementation.

Combating corrosion effectively yields several major benefits to national defense. DoD estimates that the corrosion of military equipment costs the Army, Navy and Air Force more than $20 billion per year.


Tagged categories: Bridges; Coating Materials; Coatings education; Corrosion; Corrosion protection; Department of Defense (DOD); Donations; Infrastructure; Marine; North America; Tunnel

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