SENSITIVE PAINT: Capsules of dye that can be included in paint make safety inspections of airplane exteriors easier. Collisions or other stresses break apart the capsules, releasing a contrastingly colored dye, bringing attention to areas which may be weakened structurally. This is especially important with modern aircraft exteriors made of polymer composites which do not absorb damage in the same way as metal exteriors. Color changes will alert inspectors to inspect damage that could otherwise prove easy to skip over.
ALL ABOUT PAINT: The technical definition of paint is any liquid substance that converts into an opaque solid film after being applied to a surface in a thin layer. We think of paint as being used for decorative purposes, such as adding color to the walls and trim in a room. But paint can also be used to protect a surface, such using it to slow the corrosion process of metal. It can also have added functions, such as improving the light reflection or heat radiation of a surface. Paint has three primary components: pigments (for color), binder, and a vehicle, also called solvent. The solvent is critical to determining the thickness and flow of the paint. The solvent also serves as a carrier for the binder and pigments. Many paints also contain surfactants: agents that allow more space between the molecules of a liquid. This means it can be more easily spread onto a surface. Extra additives can also give the liquid properties like antifreeze, long-lasting color, or antimicrobial capability.