Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Salty wing

Sodium Chloride spray for aircraft wings
(+3, -3)
  [vote for,

This would be a solution of thick brine and a temporary fixative. One would spray it onto the wing before flight to help prevent wing icing.

Edit: If you're worried about corrosion just mix zinc with the salt.
Voice, Dec 20 2013

Salt corrodes naked Aluminum http://www.boatingm...alt-water-corrosion
Aluminum can seemingly dissolve away in salt water when in the presence of other metals. [popbottle, Dec 20 2013]

Generally Recognized as Safe ? http://en.wikipedia...ki/Propylene_glycol
Would you drink Propylene_glycol on a dare? Nor would I. [popbottle, Dec 20 2013]

Cicadas make "pan" calls http://biology.clc....ncarter/recipes.htm
just short of a mayday [lurch, Dec 23 2013]

Irrefutable proof http://t2.gstatic.c...2NHpPGTv4d07XCfrLUw
" … a bowl of petunias, and a rather surprised-looking whale …" [8th of 7, Dec 26 2013]


       See Link. Your wings never have any ice, but one day they just fall off the plane ?
popbottle, Dec 20 2013

       There are many alternative solutions already being sprayed for this purpose. Chlorides and Aluminum/Aluminium = Bad News.
AusCan531, Dec 20 2013

       What everyone else said. [-]
8th of 7, Dec 20 2013

       I just spent some time looking up some properties of "aluminum chloride". When dissolved in water the freezing point of the water is lowered (much like is true with ordinary salt-water). Since the chlorides here are already attached to aluminum, perhaps they won't eat the metal?
Vernon, Dec 20 2013

       Yes, it will. The anion doesn't matter, it's the chloride cation in solution that does the damage.
8th of 7, Dec 20 2013

       It's true, and it's sad, because the chemical cocktail that is used to de-ice the aluminium skin of airplanes (highly diluted propylene glycol with a "handful of additives", as I once heard it described by an Air Force spokesperson) is slightly nasty shit that runs off the tarmac into streams and ground water, or even worse leeches into aquifers and ends up in the drinking water of the low-income neighborhoods you find around airports.
Alterother, Dec 20 2013

       //leeches into aquifers // that's the last thing you want - those fuckers'll eat you alive given the chance.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 20 2013

       //One would spray it onto the wing before flight to help prevent wing icing.//   

       How would this help? At 500mph, how much is going to stay on the wing? And of that which does, how much is going to be there after flying through a cloud?
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 20 2013

       //Would you drink Propylene_glycol on a dare? Nor would I.//   

       I would.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 20 2013

       //The anion doesn't matter, it's the chloride cation in solution that does the damage.//   

       anion <-> cation.   

       The cation does matter to some extent. If it's a metal less electropositive than aluminium (e.g. copper) the corrosion will be faster; if it's mercury you're screwed.
spidermother, Dec 21 2013

       Correct. The initial explanation was deliberately simplified; introducing a table of electrode potentials would not necessarily be helpful for those who do not understand electrochemical processes, and unnecessary for those that do.
8th of 7, Dec 21 2013

       I propose that a sugar solution be used. It will lower freezing point of water like any solute. It will stay on the wings because its hella sticky and also bright pink. If it leeches into aquifers the tiny critters there will burst into hyperactive rejoicingment.
bungston, Dec 21 2013

       // just mix zinc with the salt // may be a little unwise- It's lower in the electrochemical series than is aluminium.
bhumphrys, Dec 21 2013

       Beef dripping, as fat seems to insulate whales.
not_morrison_rm, Dec 23 2013

       Elephant dripping - suitable for jumbo jets ?
8th of 7, Dec 23 2013

       //Would you drink Propylene_glycol on a dare?//   

       On a dare, no. On a bet? Probably yes. How much glycol and how much money?   

       Remember, everything's toxic in sufficient quantities, but the quantities for PG are fairly high.
MechE, Dec 23 2013

       Hey, I'm first in line, [MechE] - see above.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 23 2013

       Also, isn't the antidote for the resulting formaldehyde or whatever poisoning, ethanol? OR is that ethylene glycol, not propylene glycol.   

       I dunno, better drink some ethanol just in case.   

       Merry Christmas.
Custardguts, Dec 23 2013

       Incidentally, a team in Oslo may have just made this redundant. They were looking at migratory cicadas, which travel in huge numbers from Norway to southern Spain. In so doing, they have to cross at least one mountain range; they also maintain a high altitude to avoid predation by birds.   

       This means that they are routinely exposed to conditions in which aircraft wings would be at risk of icing, yet the cicadas never ice up.   

       The Oslo team built several camera-equipped drones which flew alongside the cicadas, recording high-resolution, high-speed video. It turns out that ice does begin to form on the cicada's wings, but their surface texture is such that they repel ice better than any known material. The growing ice crystals therefore just slip off before they can get large enough to impede flight.   

       They are now working on a paint which will mimic this texture, to prevent icing on aircraft wings. (And yes, they lost three of their drones due to icing.)
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 23 2013

       //cicadas never ice up// The fact that one never hears cicadas calling in a mayday to air traffic control should not, I think, be considered definitive.
lurch, Dec 23 2013

       Absence of evidence does not constitute evidence of absence.   

       Maybe they do call, but their chirps are mistaken for static, or interference ?   

       Perhaps they just make "pan" calls, knowing that even if the stall, they can easily just land and wait for the ice to melt.
8th of 7, Dec 23 2013

       I saw that, but you said yes to a dare. I'm the one who saw how to monetize the opportunity.
MechE, Dec 23 2013

       [MechE] Damn.   

       [8th] In conditions where the drones were heavily iced, the cicadas were iceless - they didn't observe any icelessnessless cicadas.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 23 2013

       //In conditions where the drones were heavily iced   

       Not too much marzipan please.
not_morrison_rm, Dec 24 2013

       //They are now working on a paint which will mimic this texture//   

       Currently, this product/texture has bugs in it.
AusCan531, Dec 24 2013

       Ah - I'd heard it was a slug of magnesium.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 24 2013

       //Typically its a magnesium coated goat bolted to the outside of the structure.   

       Put a magnesium coated baby goat on each wing, for redundancy, just kid-ding.   

       Anyway, my money is still on blubber*. I mean when did you last hear of a whale icing over at 35,000 ft?   

       *Which does sound unhygenic, thinking about it.
not_morrison_rm, Dec 26 2013

       // when did you last hear of a whale icing over at 35,000 ft? //   

       Just after the Heart of Gold arrived in orbit around Magrathea, with Zaphod, Trillian, Ford and Arthur on board.   

       There is no record of the bowl of petunias icing up though, which suggests a further avenue of enquiry.
8th of 7, Dec 26 2013

       Purely apocryphal...show me the photos and I might believe.
not_morrison_rm, Dec 26 2013

       As you wish.   

8th of 7, Dec 26 2013

       Bun for falling whales and cicada recipes.
Voice, Dec 26 2013

       Er, that's a painting. Until you can at least produce the original sketch, I'm sticking to my guns.   

       Of course, nobody guessed that it falling whales from Area 52 that brought down the twin towers, all that plane malarkey was just the cover up....
not_morrison_rm, Dec 27 2013

       It's not even a very good painting. A sperm whale is about, what, 50ft long? In which case the bowl of petunias is about 3ft in diameter, which is improbable.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 27 2013

       // the bowl of petunias is about 3ft in diameter, which is improbable //   

       Oh wonderful, another conspiracy theorist. Why can't you just accept that a bowl of petunias can be "quite big" ? Yes, yes, Elvis is dead, the moon landings really happened, the twin towers were brought down by aircraft hijacked by arab terrorists … what next - there ain't no Sanity Clause ?
8th of 7, Dec 27 2013

       Petunias display what is known as "quorum sensing root inhibition". This means that, if a plant grows beyond a certain (quite small) size, the roots start to produce a compound which inhibits other plants, and also the petunia itself. The purpose is to create a clear patch around the plant. (The parent plant sends out runners, which may root outside this zone of inhibition).   

       Thus, a 3ft bowl of petunias is unlikely.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 27 2013

       You'll be claiming there were no petunias growing on the Grassy Knoll next …
8th of 7, Dec 27 2013

       There may have been, but only in small clumps. Had the clumps been of unlimited size, it would have been the petuniaey knoll, wouldn't it?
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 27 2013

       And technically it wasn't a knoll.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 27 2013

       Oh god, next it's going to be the Four Mile Island accident conspiracy theory all over again.   

       Hmm, give the Borg his dues, most oil paintings have yet to be retro-fitted with the disclaimer "Objects depicted on this canvas may be smaller than they appear".   

       The bowl might be only 2ft across due to optical distortion in the canvas. Possibly if we knew the curvature of the threads, a more accurate estimate might be derived?
not_morrison_rm, Dec 28 2013

       Have none of you taken an oil painting class? The orientation and concentration of the source lighting makes it obvious that the bowl of petunias is a foreground object, while the sperm whale is quite a bit further back. Without a horizon or a third, fixed object, it is quite impossible to determine the exact positions of the objects, but comparing the petunia blossoms to the width of the bowl I'm putting the bowl's diameter at no less than 18" and no more than 26".
Alterother, Dec 29 2013

       I have. My tutor made one overarching impression on me - if he said it once, he said it a thousand times: "Bowls of petunias are always placed at the same distance as whales in compositions."
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 29 2013

       M'lud, was your tutor by any chance a Russian exile named Pyotr who wore a beige eyepatch and was half-mad from ingesting the lead in the dentures made for him by the one-handed orthodontist at the Rayskiyotdykh Gulag?
Alterother, Dec 30 2013

       Good lord! You knew Monocular Pyotr?! His methods were unconventional, as you know, but then so was his capacity for Tia Maria.   

       He tought me for, oh, about six or seven years. It was only at the end of that period that I discovered he was blind in his right eye, which (in retrospect) makes it odd that he wore the patch on his left one.   

       He never talked about his time in the Gulag, except when he was awake. He had fond memories of a beverage/brush-cleaner which they used to make by fermenting and distilling pine needles.   

       I wonder what old Pyotr is up to now. Probably a couple of litres a day, if I extrapolate.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jan 01 2014

       You may be glad to learn that our mutual friend is currently enjoying a faculty position here at the Heathen Institute for Inadvisably Applied Science & Chronological Malfeasance as our Professor Emeritus of Classical Art Misinterpretation. His daily intake has indeed increased, and his fondness for sampling questionable substances left in open containers has led to him spending a lot of time in the east wing of the Fowler Building.
Alterother, Jan 01 2014

       Glad Pyotr has landed on his feet (though I expect he'll rectify that situation soon).   

       Next time you trip over him, please pass on my best wishes and remind him that he still has my third under-pantrymaid.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jan 01 2014

       Yes, he keeps her in a jar in his office.
Alterother, Jan 01 2014

       Oh dear. Oh very very dear.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jan 01 2014


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