Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Metallurgical Analysis and Conservation of Turbine Blades from Recovered Apollo F-1 Engines



Adam Creuziger, Claudia Chemello, Paul Mardikian, Jerrad Alexander


Turbine blades from a recovered F-1 engine from the Apollo 16 Saturn V rocket were examined to determine an appropriate conservation protocol. Significant corrosion damage was observed in the turbine blades which appear to be made of a nickel based ' superalloy. Pitting corrosion appears to have breached the surface of the turbine blades, and subsequently a form of dealloying corrosion preferentially attacked the ' phase, leaving behind a thin network of interconnected  phase. The particular alloy used for these turbine blades does not appear to be a known production alloy and may have been developed specifically for use in the F-1 rocket engines, with an increased concentration of refractory (Mo, Nb) elemental additions. The analytical results confirmed the severe loss of density of the blades and helped conservators determine a suitable treatment protocol for more than 400 blades and 100 fragments from four recovered turbines.
Studies in Conservation


Creuziger, A. , Chemello, C. , Mardikian, P. and Alexander, J. (2024), Metallurgical Analysis and Conservation of Turbine Blades from Recovered Apollo F-1 Engines, Studies in Conservation, [online],, (Accessed May 19, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created March 4, 2024, Updated May 10, 2024