Development of TBCs allowing higher combustion temperatures in gas turbines is of high commercial interest since it results in higher fuel efficiency and lower emissions. It is well known that TBCs produced by suspension plasma spraying (SPS) have lower thermal conductivity as compared to conventional systems due to their very fine porous microstructure. Moreover, columnar structured SPS TBCs are significantly cheaper to produce as compared to the conventionally used electron beam – physical vapour deposition (EB-PVD). However, SPS TBCs have not yet been commercialised due to low reliability and life expectancy of the coatings. Lifetime of a TBC system is significantly dependent on topcoat-bondcoat interface topography. The objective of this work was to study the effect of topcoat-bondcoat interface in SPS TBCs by changing bondcoat spray parameters and bondcoat surface heat treatment. High velocity air fuel (HVAF) spraying was used for bondcoat deposition while axial-SPS was used for topcoat deposition. Same topcoat spray parameters were used for all samples. Lifetime was examined by thermal cyclic fatigue and thermal shock testing. The influence of surface roughness on lifetime has been discussed. The results show that HVAF could be a suitable process for bondcoat deposition to achieve long lifetime SPS TBCs.

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