In order to ensure reproducibility of thermal sprayed coating characteristics, process control by a sensor system is essential. Volvo Aero has more than 5 years experience of using different sensor systems in plasma and flame spraying. This article presents two examples where such systems have been used for quality control in production. In the first example the DPV2000 system was used in plasma spraying to control the tensile strength of an abrasive application. The study showed that the particle in-flight properties and the tensile strength were very sensitive to the carrier gas flow rate. In the second example the PlumeSpector system was used to control erosion and tensile strength in flame spraying of a composite powder composed of a core of Bentonite clay coated with a shell of NiCrAl alloy. The results show that the capability could be increased by a factor of two using on-line diagnostic control.

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