Abstract

Despite the fact that plasma spraying has been a widely used technology over the past three decades, industries using this technology still need higher quality products. Presently, only a small degree of process control is used in most plasma spraying systems. Improved process control should lead to more consistent results and higher quality products. We discuss a relatively simple control scheme consisting of a microphone as a primary sensor and a fuzzy logic look-up model indicating the condition of the anode. Selected frequency peaks in the power spectrum of the microphone signal are analyzed online, and the results are correlated with an average jet length obtained from a series of high speed images. The jet length, in turn, is correlated with coating characteristics. A simple feedback control system is proposed which will counteract the negative effects of an eroded anode on coating quality.

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