Abstract

Thermal sprayed coatings are frequently used in corrosive environments, even when their major purpose is to provide wear or thermal resistance, rather than corrosion resistance. This includes Thermal Barrier Coatings (TBC), where high porosity is a desired feature to give good thermal protection. However, as this proves to be a limiting factor in the corrosion protection, a trade off is involved. This is because the interconnected porosity in TBCs allows the corrosive media to reach the coating-substrate interface, which eventually leads to delamination of the coatings. This work addresses the problem of permeability of TBCs which can lead to premature delamination due to interfacial corrosion. The coatings studied were yttria-stabilized zirconia TBCs. A simple infiltration technique has been proposed using sol-gel ceramic precursors. The precursors studied include aluminum isopropoxide or pre-hydrolyzed ethyl silicate, which decomposed to alumina and silica respectively, at surface heat treatment temperatures as low as 550°C. In addition to sealing the surface, it is believed that some level of compressive stress is generated on the surface of TBCs on cooling from the processing temperature. Electrochemical tests in 3.0% NaCl have been carried out to study the effectiveness of the sealant. These potentiodynamic tests as well as permeability tests show a considerable decrease in interconnected porosity with sol-gel modifications of the coatings.

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