Experimental studies involving aluminum particles sprayed onto polished AISI304L substrates using the Valuarc 200 wire arc previously showed that there exists a transition temperature from splash to disk splats. Increasing the substrate temperature above the transition temperature was seen to increase the number of disc splats, thus producing coatings of improved properties. XPS test results have shown that increasing the substrate temperature also results in increased oxygen content on the surface of the substrate. Experiments also show that prolonged heating of a substrate at a particular (fixed) temperature further promotes oxidation of the substrate surface, thus increasing the surface roughness (Ra). Samples generated on substrates that were held at or above 350°C (above Tt) for prolonged periods of time (over 20 minutes) were seen to promote splashing. This is in contrast to the previous findings that showed substrate temperatures above Tt further promoted disc type splats and improved adhesion between the splat and substrate. Samples generated in this study consistently showed that splashing can be seen at temperature well above the transition temperature, if the substrate has been heated for too long a duration. The cause of splashing is believed to be related to increased surface roughness resulting from prolonged oxidation of the substrate surface. Abstract only; no full-text paper available.

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