Due to the low running costs, high spray rates and efficiency wire arc spraying has become one of the most important thermal spray technology, especially as a tool for coating large areas with high deposition rates. The main applications are corrosion and wear protection of large structures, such as coating with zinc for anodic corrosion protection or with high-alloyed chromium steel for longer surface service time. Disadvantages of the arc spraying process are on the one hand that only electrically conductive materials can be processed and on the other hand the higher oxygen content within the coating compared to other thermal spray processes such as HVOF or APS. Innovative and flexible power supply systems were developed for arc welding technologies in the last decade. Today power supply devices with new features for arc wire spraying technologies are present at the market, too. Particle flow conditions as well as coating properties such as morphology and oxide content can be optimized by changing the current generator characteristic and modulating the energy input for example by pulsing the spray voltage up to 500 Hz. As a consequence of the power modulation the oxidation of the particles can be reduced by a lower heat input based on lower average spray voltage. Investigations in order to influence the droplet behaviour and the coating microstructure using dynamic current generators were performed for zinc, aluminium and copper. The effect of different modulation frequencies, pulse lengths and pulse voltages are presented.

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