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Content archived on 2024-05-29

Development of thin ceramic coatings for the protection against temperature and stress induced rumpling of the metal surface of turbine blades


The aim of this project is to improve the performance and lifetime of blades used in gas turbines for aeronautics and energy production. Turbine blades commonly have a metallic oxidation protection coating, which experiences in service severe surface rumpling. Surface rumpling is detrimental, since it decreases the aerodynamic efficiency and the life of turbines. Until now, no solution for rumpling protection is found. A new idea to suppress surface rumpling, for which the proposer is co-applicant of a paten t, is to apply additionally a thin ceramic coating on top.

The application of ceramic coatings on metal can be achieved by different methods, which usually are very expensive. An inexpensive method, however, is given by electrophoresis. The host institute KU Leuven has shown this already with success for steel, but not yet for turbine relevant metal systems. Due to the different physical and chemical properties of these metal systems compared with steel, further investigations are necessary to apply this in expensive method for turbine blades.

The intention of this project is therefore to utilize electrophoresis for a system, which consists of a substrate and an oxidation protection coating as commonly used for turbine blades. An appropriate ceramic coating and processing procedure has to be developed, which lead to a thin ceramic coating with good adherence. The adherence will be qualified under thermal cycling and the ability of rumpling protection will be tested under multi-axial mechanical and thermal loading.

The application of inexpensive and effective rumpling protection coatings will benefit turbine operators greatly. It is estimated, that it has the potential to reduce costs for aeronautics and energy production worldwide by approximately 750 million/per year. Additionally, rumpling prevention will increase the efficiency of turbines, and therefore decrease energy consumption and air pollution significantly.

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Oude Markt 13

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