Ultrasonic and acoustic emission studies of plasma sprayed coatings.

  • M. Moghisi

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


This work assesses the potentials of two NDE techniques namely ultrasonic C-scan and acoustic emission for evaluating plasma sprayed coating quality. The coating materials used were aluminium (Metco 54), alumina (Metco 105), molybdenum (Mob3) and self-fusing molybdenum (Mo5O5). It has been established that ultrasonic C-scan imaging can reliably detect thickness variations of the order of 0.05mm in plasma sprayed coatings. Also, by using this technique it is possible to detect the presence of delamination or lack of adhesion between the coating and substrate. Although it was only possible to produce aluminium and alumina coatings with artificially introduced adhesion defects, it has been shown that the presence of such defects in other coatings can also be detected. It has been established that an ultrasonic C-scan technique is not sensitive to the process parameters of plasma spraying. The process parameters investigated were; poor surface preparation, input power and surface cooling. Another major limitation of ultrasonic C-scan technique is the geometrical restrictions where components with high curvatures can not be tested. Acoustic emission activities from plasma sprayed coatings were monitored during four point bend testing. Samples sprayed on poorly prepared surfaces or sprayed without coolant air could be distinguished from control samples using AE characteristics at low strain levels. Also the AE response of the alumina coatings reflected the thickness of the coatings. Thicker coatings produced more AE events. The AE response of the molybdenum (Mo63) and self-fusing molybdenum (Mo5O5) coatings were complex. It was found that they were related to the residual stresses in the coatings. Aluminium coatings showed very little acoustic emission activities.
Date of Award1985
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Bath

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