In cold spraying, bonding is associated with shear instabilities caused by high strain rate deformation during the impact. It is well known, that bonding occurs, when the impact velocity of an impacting particle exceeds a critical value. This critical velocity depends not only on the type of spray material, but also on the powder quality, the particle size and the particle impact temperature. Up to now, optimization of cold spraying mainly focused on increasing the particle velocity. The new approach presented in this contribution demonstrates capabilities to reduce critical velocities by well-tuned powder sizes and particle impact temperatures. A newly designed temperature control unit was implemented to a conventional cold spray system and various spray experiments with different powder size cuts were performed to verify results from calculations. Microstructures and mechanical strength of coatings demonstrate that the coating quality can be significantly improved by using well-tuned powder sizes and higher process gas temperatures. The presented optimization strategy, using copper as an example, can be transferred to a variety of spray materials and thus, should boost the development of the cold spray technology with respect to the coating quality.

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